New Derry Councillor, Gary Donnelly, has called for a “united community response” after several fires were set alight in the Creggan area over the weekend.
Mr. Donnelly said he was contacted by an elderly resident late on Saturday evening after they noticed smoke coming from the lane that runs adjacent to St. Mary’s Church in Creggan.
“It’s at the time of year when young people are out on the streets until late at night but that’s no excuse for lighting fires in places like the laneway beside the chapel.” said Colr. Donnelly.
Colr. Donnelly extinguished the fire but said that as a result of what happened in the area over the weekend many elderly residents feel they can no longer walk to the local shops or leave their homes.
“The lane beside St. Mary’s Chapel and outside the Creggan shops are flashpoints during the summer months and as a result some older people living in the area feel intimidated and don’t feel comfortable walking to the local shop.
“This situation in Creggan needs a united community response and the young people have to realise that what they are doing is counterproductive for their local community,” he said.
Rosemount community worker, Tommy McCourt, echoed the calls of Colr. Donnelly for the “united response” and added that it was unwise to expect the response to be incumbent on particular areas of the city.
“All of the independent councillors in Derry are united in what they think needs to be done about this type of situation.
“What happened in Creggan is happening in their parts of the city and the only way to stop it is if all agencies concerned respond together to find a solution,” he said.