Police operation to tackle illegal street racing hailed as a success

A police operation to reduce street racing was declared a success following a number of arrests.

James Morris MP at Manor Way
James Morris MP at Manor Way

Last year, Halesowen residents near the A456 begged Halesowen James Morris MP for help and as result of regular meetings with police, Operation Hercules was launched.

Regular patrols by West Midlands Police around Manor Way followed, and several of the ringleaders have been arrested.

Many of the illegal races begin at the Hayley Green Island before travelling up towards the M5 junction, and James has been in touch with residents there over the concerns they have raised.

Discussions are also being held between all four Black Country Councils and West Midlands Police for a new High Court injunction to ban car cruising, following the expiry of the previous injunction last year.

The MP said: "The issues around car cruising caused a real nuisance for many residents, particularly those living on Cloister Drive and on the Abbeyfields and Halesmere estates, who are in close proximity. It really started to escalate during the third Covid lockdown, when many people were spending more time at home, and it was a worrying time for many.

"I’ve been in regular contact with residents, councillors, council officials and the police, and our regular meetings have given everyone had a chance to air their concerns and receive an update on the action being taken. I am pleased with the progress so far, but we must remain vigilant and I will continue to monitor the situation, working with police and council officials so that residents in the area can enjoy peace of mind.”

Resident Christopher Kings said: "The car cruising nuisance has significantly decreased following the intervention of James Morris and the West Midlands traffic police, we have occasional disturbances now but nothing like the noise nuisance we have experienced in the past year.

"The council have started work on the A456 and this again may have helped with cars not using the roadway as a raceway. The police continue to do their best in helping residents in our area and other areas to alleviate this nuisance. “

PS Steven Crowe, Halesowen Neighbourhood Policing Supervisor, said: "Based on the information people have been providing us with, we have been able to target patrols to prevent people driving in an antisocial way.

"Those who we did find cruising on Manor Way and the surrounding areas have been given a one-off warning telling them that if they are spotted again, they will have their car taken away.

"Car cruising is banned in the Black Country. Offenders risk being arrested and face driving bans and fines of up to £5,000. Their cars can also be seized and crushed."

Sergeant Chris Thomas, RPU Supervisor for Operation Hercules, Central Motorway Police Group, added: "Operation Hercules is the tactical response to street racing within the West Midlands. We take the issue of street racing and the illegal use of the strategic roads network very seriously and the safety of the public is at the heart of everything we do.

"We work locally with teams within Dudley and closely with the Halesowen Neighbourhood Policing Team. We do this in order to support them in reducing crime and anti-social behaviour and to help make the lives of the public safer."

Sorry, we are not accepting comments on this article.

Top Stories

More from the Express & Star

UK & International News