LOCALS living on one of the most deprived streets say they're too scared to leave their homes or go into shops as drug dealers hold their town hostage.
Uxbridge Street in Burton-upon-Trent, Staffordshire, is rife with druggies, boozers and burglars.
According to residents, some men even stand outside people's front doors and urinate up them.
One business owner in the area said gangs of youths congregate near the off-licences drinking and smoking.
The woman, who didn't want to be named, claimed the unsettling behaviour is losing her customers.
The cake shop owner said: “Sometimes it stops the ladies coming out to browse or buy with groups of guys loitering around.
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“It's off putting for them and it's costing me business."
Khaliqdad Karimi, whose previous kebab shop had been burgled, told how just last week he saw dozens of smashed bottles strewn across the pavement.
He claims police never reprimand the people responsible so they continue to blight the neighbourhood.
He told The Sun Online: "There are people with a bad attitude, and the main problem is drugs and they are doing deals in the alleyway.
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“It’s a residential area with all generations living here and the street has a bad name, and the women don't feel safe.
“The other day I saw broken glass bottles smashed across the pavement and just left there."
A mum, 43, who doesn't speak English, said through her female pal she's terrified.
She said: "I never leave home at night. I’m too scared and don’t feel safe.
“There’s men standing around on the the street corners looking as if they’re up to no good.”
She also recalled the moment a yob recently “peed in the alley right outside my door.”
She added: “I saw him from my window. It was disgusting. It happens all the time."
Despite living on the street for seven years, the woman only goes out in the daytime because of how "dangerous" it's become.
The neighbourhood is dotted with food stores, off licenses and barber shops.
The bookies on the street has been forced to put a sign on its door telling people they can't bring alcohol in.
'MAD, CRAZY PEOPLE'
Raza Mehmood, who works at Pakeeza Food told our team: “There are mad, crazy people around here.
“They go to the off licence, they buy drinks and do drugs and things escalate.
"Two weeks ago one of our customers was targeted in the middle of the road in broad daylight.
"He was arriving home and these guys blocked his car before he could park up.
"They forced open the door and engine with a crowbar and stole stuff, and then ran off."
A 75-year-old woman living opposite his shop said: “I don’t feel safe. There are gangs on every corner and I never go out at night.
"Young men congregating and it’s getting worse.”
The pensioner, who lives alone and was too scared to be identified, added: "It's a dump here.
"There’s lots of rubbish, road sweepers come and clean the street but shortly after all the junk is back, food waste from the shops, plastics, everything."
Builder Shakeel Ahmed, 52, visiting the Pakeeza store to buy produce for his wife, said: “It’s a problem area, a lot of drug dealing, shouting and drinking.
“My wife’s too worried to come here which is a pity because there are some very good shops here. Even the teenage girls get scared."
Taxi driver Raul Muhammad, 41, told how he had been a victim of thieves in the past, who broke into his unattended vehicle and ripped out audio equipment which he reported to police.
He said: “There are so many druggies on every street corner, sitting, smoking and drinking all day.”
LIVING IN FEAR
But a young woman, 22, working in an off licence, had a differing view.
She said: “It’s not that bad, people are doing drugs, but everywhere is the same basically.
“I live around here and have a four-year-old daughter and I feel safe.
"It’s a small town and everyone knows each other and no one has been aggressive or rude to me.”
Uxbridge Street was recently named as one of the most deprived in Burton by the Office of National Statistics (ONS), along with nearby Queen Street, with issues of crime, drug taking and vehicle thefts.
One shopkeeper said: "A man parked in the street in broad daylight and popped in a neighbouring shop.
"By the time he came out his window had been smashed.
"It happens a lot around here, especially to taxi drivers when they nip in a shop and leave money on show.
"Some people around here will smash car windows just for a couple of quid because they're that desperate."
The street, nearly a mile long, boasts 10 convenience stores, six takeaways and four barber shops and two bookies.
East Staffordshire Borough Councillor Ali Chaudhry, who represents the area, said: "There's no doubt that the Anglesey Ward, including Uxbridge Street, is deprived.
"Uxbridge Street is culturally rich, which is great, but this comes with its own challenges.
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"There are problems with street drinking, fly-tipping and anti-social issues that are ongoing."
He added: "We are working with the council and Staffordshire Police to deal with issues as they arise."
Crimes committed in Burton-upon-Trent this year
According to the local force, Staffordshire Police, over 200 crimes were reported in January alone.
Here's a breakdown of the crime in the area and how many reports were made:
- Violence and sexual offences – 116
- Burglary – 2
- Other theft – 2
- Public order offences – 24
- Vehicle crime – 14
- Anti-social behaviour – 11
- Criminal damage and arson – 1
- Other crime – 68
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