Comment: The 5 Worst Areas to Live in Coventry

A video called “The 5 Worst Areas to Live in Coventry” has been viewed on YouTube by 28,000 people since it was uploaded last month.

The video looks at the large amounts of fly-tipping, deprivation and high crime rates in Bell Green, Hillfields, Henley Green, Willenhall and Foleshill.

I sent the video to local media to see if the council had any comment on the issues highlighted.

A council spokesperson said:

“Coventry is a great city and a wonderful place to visit. Our city is full of hard-working people, and we are working with a range of partners, including landlords, to support improvements as well as seeking private sector investment.

In terms of fly-tipping our officers do regular checks across the city and deal with fly-tipped materials on our land straight away. We also routinely serve notices on tenants, landlords and landowners to clear their land and make repairs on their properties. In the past year alone we have served over 800 notices to force removal of waste from private land.

Of course there is always more to do. But there is much to celebrate in our city too. This issue is also about personal responsibility, and we encourage anyone who sees fly-tipping to report it anonymously”.

I have lived in all of the areas featured in the video except Bell Green but I remember walking there from Henley Green to go shopping when I was a kid. I have also stood for election in Longford which covers Bell Green.

I currently live in Foleshill which is the worst area for fly-tipping in the city. I have been calling on the council to do more to tackle fly-tipping and I have taken hundreds of photos of fly-tipping around Foleshill, Hillfields and Henley Green over the past 4years.

The bed seen in Hillfields at 5:00 in the video has been there since August 2023 because I took a photo of it when I went to look at a flat it’s dumped behind.

I also saw a resident dumping rubbish outside their own home nearby. I reported the fly-tipping to the council and the social landlord responsible for the area (Citizen).

In September 2023, both the council and Citizen said they had removed fly-tipping over the previous year which is clearly false because the bed is still there in the video. In April 2023, the council also admitted that crime and anti-social behaviour in Hillfields are “tolerated by all agencies”.

Furthermore, I grew up in a house directly opposite the tower block in Henley Green. There used to be shops and a pub around the block which were knocked down when I was a kid. However, nothing has been done to improve the site since.

The tower block was originally built by the council but was sold years ago. However, the council recently leased it back for almost as much as it was sold for to house homeless families. The deal was agreed in 2018 for 5 years but the council is still using it as temporary accommodation.

The video also mentions that Henley Green is one of the most deprived areas in England. This is the reason why the Henley College was built.

However, the college recently closed and plans have been put forward for new housing on the site. The Henley College merged with City College which means students from Henley Green now have to pay travel costs to get to the city centre.

What’s more, the council sold the lease for Riley Square in Bell Green because it was the easy option. However, the developer recently defaulted on a loan and have been suspended from regenerating the site.

Residents have given up hope because the council doesn’t seem to care about this part of the city. This is the area with the lowest election turnout and it’s also the seat of the council leader which is shameless.

Our candidate in Binley and Willenhall has been setting an example by supporting local communities and working hard to improve the wider area including carrying out regular litter picks.

One of our members also successfully campaigned for a new weapon surrender bin in Hillfields.

In addition, I forced the council to review its anti-social behaviour policy after I complained about my own experiences in Foleshill.

The council needs to do more to improve these areas and give citizens more community pride in the places where they live.

We are committed to tackling crime and anti-social behaviour, improving the quality of social housing and the regeneration of outer city areas.

Download a copy of our full Policy Agenda here.

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