Local students campaign for more lighting in the nature reserve

'More lights' poster displayed at numerous locations around the nature reserve in Bradley Stoke.

Four months after the sexual assault of a young woman at the Three Brooks Local Nature Reserve, a group of four students from Bradley Stoke Community School have set up a campaign to place more lighting in this area.

The student-led campaign addresses the need for more street lights around the nature reserve which currently has minimal lighting during the evening hours. The Three Brooks Nature Reserve has recently suffered from increased criminal activity which the campaigners believe has made the area “even more dangerous” for the local community during the evening and darker periods of the day as winter approaches.

The campaign first gained attention in July at the Bradley Stoke Safer and Stronger Community Group meeting. The group meets bi-monthly to discuss local issues which affect the safety of the community. During the July meeting, a member of the group, Vicki Rozzell, introduced the campaign to Brian Gaches: a local representative of South Gloucestershire Council who was able to pass on the students’ concerns for consideration by the council’s Community Open Spaces team. However, one of the group’s campaigners Gabrielle Duffy later commented:

“The council have said that for the time being they can’t do anything because their main focus at present is to stop speeding.”

Since the meeting, the students have continued to actively pursue their campaign, placing a number of posters promoting the need for more lights in and around the area of the Three Brooks Nature Reserve. The students have also set up a Twitter page and a change.org online petition which has attracted over 100 supporters of the campaign. Gabrielle went on to describe the positive reaction her group’s campaign had received from the local community:

“Most local residents agreed and said that having more lights around the area is important as it will make them feel safer. Because of the recent assault they now feel like it is an even more important issue as they don’t feel safe at all walking through this area.”

Bringing their campaign to the attention of the wider community of Bradley Stoke and South Gloucestershire Council, the students hope to provide a collective voice for local residents who share their concerns about the need for improved lighting in the Three Brooks Nature Reserve.

With a duck pond which attracts a variety of wildlife and nature trails which are frequently used by local runners, the nature reserve is still a popular destination within Bradley Stoke.

With this in mind, the student campaigners from Bradley Stoke Community School recognise that this area needs to be made safer through an improved lighting system. The campaigners believe that this will ensure local residents feel safe and that criminals will feel discouraged from approaching the nature reserve.

Put More Street Lights In The Nature Reserve!! (change.org online petition to South Gloucestershire Council)

Police search a litter bin in the Three Brooks Local Nature Reserve, Bradley Stoke.

Photo: Police search a litter bin in the Three Brooks Local Nature Reserve following the sexual assault incident in June.

This article originally appeared in the October 2015 edition of the Bradley Stoke Journal news magazine, delivered FREE, EVERY MONTH, to 9,500 homes in Bradley Stoke, Little Stoke and Stoke Lodge. Phone 01454 300 400 to enquire about advertising or leaflet insertion.

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