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Salford services 'radically redesigned' in budget

Salford City Council has approved its budget for the next year which will see "radically redesigned" services as they look to save £31m.

In a statement the city's mayor Ian Stewart promised to freeze council tax for the sixth year running and protect adult social care services.

All our services will need to change, some may disappear and some may be delivered by other organisations alone or in partnership with the council. But we’ve made every effort to limit reductions and even invest in critical services where we can.

– Ian Stewart, Mayor of Salford


Watch: Cowardly would-be robbers chased off by shopkeeper

Police are hunting four men whose attempt to rob a shop in Salford was cut short when they were chased off by a shopkeeper with a stick.

At around 8pm on Tuesday January 27, the four men approached the Gardens Convenience Store in Ellesmere Park in Salford armed with crowbars and a hammer.

Three of the men stayed outside the shop and attacked the windows with crowbars, while the fourth man entered the shop armed with the hammer.

But as the offender approached the counter, the shopkeeper picked up a stick and chased him away. The offenders then all fled up the street empty-handed.

The offender with the hammer is described as white and around 5ft 6in tall. He was wearing a light grey tracksuit with a black balaclava and dark gloves.

I must commend the shopkeeper’s bravery in this situation, chasing away four armed men with just a stick.

The offender who enters the shop takes just seconds to turn on his heels and run away, taking his friends with him.

They will not be winning any awards for bravery any time soon, but that should not detract from the fact they went to the shop armed to cause damage and perhaps even inflict injury.

– PC Lee Cunliffe

Police speak out on hate crime after anti-semitic graffiti attack on Jewish community

Waterpark Road, Salford. Credit: ITV News.

Sir Peter Fahy, the Chief Constable of Greater Manchester, has spoken out after a swastika symbol was painted on a pavement in Waterpark Road, Salford - an area with a predominately Jewish population.

Figures released this week by the Community Security Trust showed the highest ever figure of anti-Semitic incidents recorded over the past year.

GMP says there has been an increase in such incidents since the terrorist attack in Paris and also an increase in hate incidents directed against Muslim individuals and institutions.

The force said it's "closely monitoring" all hate incidents and is asking the public to be vigilant.

Sir Peter Fahy. Credit: Press Association.

The use of a swastika in this way is insulting not only to members of the Jewish faith but indeed to the families of all those who fought against Nazism in the Second World War.

"You have to wonder whether people who do this are incredibly stupid and don't understand basic history or are just evil in wanting to cause fear and distress.

"Hate crime is important because it insults people's deeply held beliefs and their backgrounds and history and that is why the police see it as a priority.

"This incident is not just about some paint on a flagstone it has a wider significance because of all the death, destruction and hatred that this symbol represents . "

– Chief Constable Sir Peter Fahy

Police concerned for missing man from Salford

Police in Salford say they are concerned about a man missing from the city.

Dale Buckley has been missing since Friday Credit: Greater Manchester Police

Dale Buckley was last seen leaving Hope Hospital at 1.30pm on Friday. He was seen heading along Eccles Old Road, in the direction of Eccles.

He is described as white, with short dark blonde hair, of slim build, approximately 5ft 10in tall, with a stubbly beard. He was last seen wearing a green cap, grey hooded top, grey tracksuit bottoms, a black body warmer, trainers and a silver necklace.

Inspector Darren Whitehead said:

If anyone has seen Dale Buckley or knows details of any of his family or current whereabouts then please let us know.

Even the smallest piece of information may be useful in helping us to trace him.

– Inspector Darren Whitehead

Hunt for arsonists who targeted a family in Salford

Police in Salford are hunting arsonists after two homes were set on fire within an hour of each other.

Crews were called to Dunscombe Street in Higher Broughton at 4am on Sunday after a property was set alight. There were 3 adults and 5 children - including a 10 day old baby inside asleep at the time. Fortunately, the family woke up when their dog began to bark and escaped through the back door. They saw a man watching from nearby, he's described as slim build, bushy eyebrows, wearing a black scarf and a black hoody with the hood up. He ran off when he realised he had been seen.

An hour later, the occupants of a small block of flats on Great Cheetham Street East were woken by a loud bang and found that a fire had been lit in the communal stairwell. Again, all the residents were able to escape unharmed.

“We could easily have been dealing with a large number of deaths and the way this offender or offenders have intentionally targeted two residential properties makes them exceptionally dangerous.

– Detective Sergeant Julie Connor


Clare's law: How the numbers stack up

Thirteen hundred violent partners have been revealed since the introduction of Clare's Law. It came in after Clare Wood was murdered by her ex boyfriend in Salford, 6 years ago. The law allows people to check if their partner has a violence past. Here's the breakdown in our region:

Clare's Law (Domestic Violence Disclosure Scheme) and Domestic violence protection orders

Police force / Clare's Law applications / Clare's Law disclosures:

  • Cheshire: 119/32
  • Cumbria 61/41
  • Greater Manchester 291/177
  • Lancashire 189/146
  • Merseyside 144/11

Clare Wood's father - 'She would be proud'

MIchael Brown, the father of Clare Wood. Credit: Press Association.

Clare Wood's father said his murdered daughter would spur him on if she was able to witness the campaigning he has done to raise awareness of domestic violence.

Michael Brown, 71, said his work to bring about changes to legislation to protect women from domestic abuse has helped him deal with the grief felt over his daughter's death.

Mr Brown, a retired prison officer, said more could still be done to protect women from abusive men, including improved use of the police national computer to identify potential abusers.

In the wake of his daughter's death, he lobbied for the Government to enact what would become Clare's Law, which allows the police to disclose information about a partner's previous history of domestic violence or violent acts.

"I've never gone into this for personal glory. I was dragged into this kicking and screaming, had it not been for the fact that my daughter ended up with an untimely end. I'm sure if she's watching she'll say 'good for you Dad, get on'.

"It gave me something to vent my anger on. It was the last thing I expected in my life."

– Michael Brown

Clare's Law shows scale of domestic violence problem

Clare Wood, from Salford, was murdered by her ex-boyfriend in 2009.

The abusive pasts of more than 1,300 violent partners have been revealed since the introduction of Clare's Law.

The legislation, named after Clare Wood from Salford, who was murdered by her ex-boyfriend, allows the police to disclose information about a partner's previous history of domestic violence or violent acts.

Using Freedom of Information laws, the Press Association discovered at least 1,335 disclosures have been made across England and Wales under the law following 3,760 applications for disclosure.

But the figures show there are variations between police forces and now Salford and Eccles MP Hazel Blears, who campaigned with Miss Wood's father Michael Brown to introduce the scheme, said she would write to the Home Secretary to ask what is being done to ensure best practice.

Ms Blears said: "The fact there have been almost 4,000 applications shows just how serious a problem domestic violence is in this country and two women a week are killed by a current or former partner.

"More than a third of those who have made an application have received information which empowers them to make a potentially life-changing - or even life-saving - decision to end a relationship. So it is clear the scheme has been of great assistance to hundreds of people already.

"What these figures show, however, is that the likelihood of a disclosure being made varies enormously across the country, so while here in Greater Manchester it happens in more than 60% of cases, in Merseyside the figure is just 11%.

"This suggests Clare's Law is being applied in different ways by police forces. I will be writing to the Home Secretary to ask what is being done to review its use and ensure best practice is shared across the country and the right decisions are made."

Tragic Shahida's family say their 'lives have been left empty' by the teenager's death

Shahida Shahid. Credit: Manchester Evening News.

The family of 18-year-old Shahida Shahid, who died after a suspected allergic reaction after a meal in Manchester last week, have said she 'brought joy to many'.

In a statement released by Greater Manchester Police, they also spoke about her being a university student and a fan of Manchester United.

Our beloved angel Shahida, who was only 18 years old, was sadly taken away from us.

"She was the light of our lives, our happiness and brought joy to many whom she met.

"She was studying Mathematics at the University of Manchester and was an avid Manchester united fan.

"We were so proud of her many achievements but most of all, her generosity and her giving nature. She filled up our lives with her bubbly personality, her memorable laugh and her sense of humour.

"Our home and lives have been left empty without our little baby girl but she will never be forgotten and in her passing. "We are immensely thankful for all the love, messages and condolences from all who have met her or heard of her passing."

– Statement from Shahida's family

At about 8.30pm on the previous Friday, police were called to Withy Grove in Manchester city centre following reports she had collapsed.

Shahida, from Salford, was rushed to hospital but she sadly died a few days later.

Police say initial inquiries have established Shahida had been out for a meal in The Great Northern prior to her collapse and may have suffered an allergic reaction to her food.

A joint investigation is underway involving Greater Manchester Police and the Food Standards Agency to establish the exact circumstances.

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