Clean up my town

Katy Campbell, eight, lives in Heckmondwike and is angry about the state of some buildings in Heckmondwike which she says are scruffy and make the town look bad. (D535D246)
Katy Campbell, eight, lives in Heckmondwike and is angry about the state of some buildings in Heckmondwike which she says are scruffy and make the town look bad. (D535D246)
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A LITTLE girl is taking absentee landlords to task over rundown properties.

Katy Campbell, eight, wants owners of boarded up shops in Heckmondwike to bring them back into use or knock them down to improve the look of the town.

And she is hoping to get her school friends on board with her campaign.

Holy Spirit Catholic Primary School pupil Katy, of Fisher Way, Heckmondwike, said: “I have seen lots of scruffy buildings in Heckmondwike. Some people care for them and some people don’t and it looks a bit scruffy.

“People in nice shops will be sad and annoyed because it makes it look like they don’t care for the rest of the land. Millbridge School is near some of the shops and they must be annoyed because it looks like it’s part of their land.

“The owners should fix the buildings but some of them should be knocked down.

“My friends think Heckmondwike is a bit scruffy and they want to do what I want to do.

“It’s part of my town and I want it to look nice.”

Katy’s dad Andrew said: “Katy brought the subject of these buildings up and I thought, it’s going to be her town centre in the future. Visitors’ impressions could be a lot better if somebody took a bit of care. We often go to Green Park and it’s so well cared for but some of the buildings around it are in a sorry state.”

He said Heckmondwike desperately needed a bus station which had been planned for Royle Fold. Buildings were cleared to make way for it last July.

Last month Coun David Sheard (Lab, Heckmondwike) said Kirklees Council and Metro were still planning to build the new facility, which includes a library and information centre, following rumours in the town the scheme had been axed.

He said the future of the scheme was subject to Kirklees’s capital budget, which would be firmed up in February next year.

A Kirklees Council spokesman said: “We are supportive of private landlords who wish to bring their empty properties back into use, though we are also reliant on their commitment to doing so.

“The council does a huge amount of work to ensure that all of our communities, including Heckmondwike, remain as vibrant as possible during these difficult economic times.”