OFFENDERS armed only with paintbrushes and bin bags were put to work cleaning up a Solihull street as part of the Community Payback scheme.
Ten people subject to community service orders imposed by courts – part of which involves carrying out unpaid work – spent several hours removing litter and painting over graffiti in Lyndon’s Rock Road.
Solihull Police Neighbourhood Inspector Darren Wilson said the clean-up – one of several Payback projects across the borough – visibly illustrates how offenders are repaying communities for their crimes.
He said: “Members of the public want to see that offenders are not only being punished but are also putting something back into communities that may have suffered from their criminality.
“On this occasion, they spent four hours painting fence panels, scrubbing off graffiti, sweeping pathways and removing litter. Their efforts have helped make the area more attractive and many residents came out to show their support and thanks.”
Those offenders taking part – who ranged in age from 20 to 40 - had been convicted of offences such as theft, criminal damage, public disorder, and cultivating cannabis.
Solihull Council Neighbourhood Co-ordinator Annie Masters, who organised the Rock Road initiative, said: “We’ve run similar operations in Elmdon’s Old Lode Lane and along the canal towpaths…we’re always keen to hear from members of the public who think a certain area would benefit from Payback work.”