“They don’t empty the trash cans anymore. Everything is overgrown. They don’t care anymore.”
Marcus, 38, a resident of the Ripleyville estate, is counting the days until he can finally move to a nicer apartment near Bradford town center.
“It’s a little bad in here,” he said, standing in a front door with a shattered window.
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“As soon as I get out of here the better. It’s been like this (run down) for a while and people are breaking in.”
Marcus, who works for a city food manufacturer, has lived in the crime-ridden area since the late 1980s and shared an apartment with his mother, who died last year.
Now he is one of the few residents who wait to relocate before the estate is demolished and rebuilt.
Most of the windows are boarded up and there is little human activity on site other than vandals and security guard patrols.
Marcus says the place has been overlooked.
“They no longer empty the trash cans. They haven’t been doing it for a few months.
“I have seen people rummaging through garbage cans, looking for clothes. It’s foreigners doing it.”
Home security, he says, has been an issue for some time.
“I was working nights and had to leave work to come and check on the property.”
Marcus’ apartment, along with around 160 others, is slated to be demolished and replaced with more modern homes.
Accent Housing claims that 1970s apartments in Ripleyville – described as a ‘utopian estate’ at the time – were inspired by a discredited new urban design technique, which led to issues of anti-social behavior and social isolation .
The Shipley-based company has submitted a request to flatten the site, off Spring Mill Street off Manchester Road, and build “a place where people choose to live”.
The planning application states: “Built in the 1970s, the Ripleyville estate adopted a Radburn layout where the movements of pedestrians and cars were separated.
“It is often referred to as an urban development characterized by failure because of its alleys and interconnected green squares used as common entrances and exists for homes – helping to isolate communities and encourage crime, with roads and streets. poorly guarded car parks. “
The domain should be completely vacated by the end of the year.
People who live in private homes next to the estate have welcomed the demolition plans.
One woman said: “One of the apartments was used as a dumping ground for all kinds. A man kept posting pornographic images on his windows.
A woman who used the estate as a shortcut to pick up her children from their school said, “The people here are very nice.
“A friend of mine lived here and has now moved. Everyone was really nice.”
Yorkshire Live approached Bradford Council to ask why the trash cans had not been emptied for months, as Marcus claims.
A council spokesperson said: “We have had reports that the containers serving these properties contain rubble or construction waste, which is not collected by our curbside waste collection crews.
“People also threw flies there.
“The rubble must be placed in rented skips or sent to our household waste recycling sites.
“We will, however, be returning to the site tomorrow and taking steps to empty the trash.”
A spokesperson for Accent Housing said there were only five residents left on the estate – as well as security personnel who were present around the clock.
The spokesperson added: “Since October 2020, we have helped approximately 140 residents to be relocated.
“40% of those clients have now moved to alternative Accent homes. We are working with the remaining five residents to find suitable accommodation.
“As long as residents remain alive in Ripleyville, the garbage collection will continue, however, we have been alerted to an issue with the last garbage collection.
“Our contractors will be on site today to remove the waste.
“In addition, we recognize that this is a hot spot for the spill of flies, so we do regular inspections and remove any found objects.
“Until all properties are vacant, we will continue our established grounds maintenance and joint cleaning routines.
“Given the volume of empty housing currently on site, and to ensure our remaining residents feel safe and happy in their homes, security is on site 24/7.
“We have also secured all empty properties to reduce the risk of intrusion. Residents can call security if they have immediate concerns, any time of the day or night.”
Ripleyville was built in 1976 and consisted of 164 apartments spread over several streets, the spokesperson added.
“The estate needs a significant reinvestment.
“Following the client consultation – in which the vast majority of people voted to have the site demolished and rebuilt – Bradford Council is considering our application for a building permit.
“We have sent letters to the whole community to let them know our intentions and encourage them to share their views.”
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