GP surgery clad with barbed wire to prevent youths playing football on the roof

No longer secure from anti-social behaviour, they have now applied to Tameside council for retrospective planning permission to use barbed wire to protect the practice

This is an edited version of an article first published by the Manchester Evening News.

Staff at Highlands Surgery in Ashton-under-Lyne claim that young people scaling the property have also tried to ‘tamper’ with the building’s air conditioning. The barbed wire, which spans the 20 metres of roof covering the main waiting room, children’s play area, reception and pharmacy, has been in place since August.

Reports submitted to the town hall add that the GP surgery has also been hit by four break-ins in just two years.

The application form submitted by business support manager Alex Jones states: ‘The purpose of the installation was to stop youths climbing onto the roof and playing football. This is obviously very dangerous and they do it on a regular basis. These are major health and safety concerns we need to address.’

‘Another factor to consider is that the surgery has been broken into four times in the last two years and the chemist located on the premises has been broken into twice. As medication is stored on the premises, one enormous risk is that youths could access this medication and cause harm to themselves or others.’

The surgery has around 8,000 registered patients from a catchment area of Audenshaw, Ashton-under-Lyne and Dukinfield.

Since installing the wire in the summer, they have had no further problems. The planning department are expected to reach a decision by mid-November on whether the barbed wire is permitted.

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