A COMMUNITY still reeling after a man was shot dead outside their homes have warned: “This will happen again.”
Shocked Thornton Lodge residents were yesterday waking up to find their quiet streets sealed off with blue police tape after a 28-year-old man was shot dead and another man was injured during the early hours of Friday morning.
The Brook Street shooting happened at 3.50am close to the derelict Thornton Lodge Community Centre, which was destroyed by fire last November.
The burnt-out eyesore has since become a haven for drug use and anti social behaviour, according to locals.
Now they are calling on Kirklees Council to get it rebuilt as quickly as possible to give young people in the area something positive to focus on.
Mohammed Sarfraz, 38, who lives in the area and also runs Streetwise – a national education programme about gang and gun crime – said: “We knew something like this was going to happen because of all the different cultures young people are involved in these days.
“They are resorting to violence but don’t use their hands and fists. It is now knives, guns and other weapons.
“There is absolutely nothing for young people to do around here.
“We need to get that community centre open again and get some facilities. Otherwise, this will happen again.”
Clr Molly Walton, who represents Thornton Lodge, said plans had been drawn up for the new centre.
But she was unable to determine how long it would be before the new building was ready for opening.
She said: “I think the council has acted as quickly as it could, given that this was a fire and police investigation. Then there was the insurance claim too.
“The plans have now been drawn up and shown to Thornton Lodge Action Group which is made up of local residents.”