Regulating or closing down the YMCA

13 years ago...

The comments on this site back up my own opinion of Surbiton - a great place to live with one major problem - the YMCA.

I seems to me that virtually all of the 'low and mid level' crime in the town centre originates with the inmates of this centre. Whenever I see anyone who looks slightly dodgy in Surbiton, you can guarantee that the next time I see them they will be coming in or out of the YMCA (or the back of a police van).

The problem is that other Surbiton residents are not happy to walk back from the station on their own in case they encounter someone from the YMCA. I often worry about inviting people from outside of the area for an evening in Surbiton for the same reason. This would be ok if we lived somewhere closer in to London, and the disturbances came from a number of sources, but almost every problem in Surbiton seems to originate in the same place.

The rambling post was prompted by an article in today's Evening Standard newspaper, showing two girls being bottled by a man in the Surbiton station subway. Unsuprisingly, the man was later caught in the YMCA.

Is there anyway that we can lobby the council to either close down the YMCA or to regulate it more closely so only a limited number of inmates at any one time are allowed to come from high risk groups?

Any ideas?

Comments

N cn't stnd ths dts thr bcs thy dn't cntrbt nythng sfl t frm lk ths thy cnnt dbt wtht bcmng sfl. Thy r nt ntllgnt ngh t b bl t grsp cncpts tht r nw t thm. Thy r nly jst bt rtclt ngh t nm cll nd tht s t. Lk y sy bng nnyms gvs thm n dvntg nd dn't knw why dmn cn't s ths.

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ctlly, ths s prbbly th bsst ths frm hs vr bn...

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Y wll prbbly gt clld mpptt nd dck TG!! Th nnyms n s lsng t bg tm, nt ll thr thnk !

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fr ngh. ssmng th md s pyng ttntn f crs s h sms t llw ll srts f bhvr n hr. jst cn't stnd ths dts!

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Shldnt ths 'cnvrstn' b splt by / th md, nd mvd t nthr thrd? thn thr cn b th YMC thrd nd th thrd bt pstng r m gng t b clld mpptt fr vn sgstng ths :P

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ls clvr dck, f y clck n mn nd MSJMR's prfls y'll s h's bn ctv fr 5 wks nd 'v bn ctv fr 2 yrs 33 wks. bvsly nt th sm prsn, y [cnsrd]ng crtns nnc.

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^@nnyms, nt MSJMR

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Dd y pck p tht mtrl whlst wtchng th lttl bys rnnng rnd thrgh th bshs t Mpl Rd nfnts schl?

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h dn't gr wth yr prs bng bttr bt gr 100% bt th rtrd. H s t thck t ndrstnd wht m syng bt nn pstrs. Prbbly rght bnhd wh wrs nn Jck shrts nd shts "ngrlnd, ngrlnd" tsd Snsbrys drng n ntrntnl sccr mtch.

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htspnnrs (k MSJMR) Y sgnd ff wth .. rtrd Hw pprprt

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"Gt rd f yr wn prblm frst htspnnrs (k MSJMR)" s, ths s wht 'm tlkng bt. Wht's th pnt f lttng ppl pst nnymsly? t lds t cnfsng nd ngtv tmsphr. 'v bn pstng n hr fr vr tw yrs sng ths nm, rtrd. Pls my prs s bttr thn MSJMR thnk y vry mch. Rtrd.

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nt sr wht yr pnt s, pl? ll 'm syng s t lst wnt t knw wh's cllng m twt. t's nt gd brd tmsphr t hv ppl rnnng wld pstng whtvr thy wnt wth n fr f rprcssn. spclly whn thy r bnch f brn-dd, sm lltrt crtns.

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Gt rd f yr wn prblm frst htspnnrs (k MSJMR)

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S rgstrng nm mks ll th dffrnc ds t Ths frm y vry wn MSJMR (Mlclm Smth) frm th St Mrks Cngrgtn Pstd: wmn ws rbbd n Lvlc r, th plc trcd th scmbg bck t th YMC, ths s th rply f yr rgstrd sr .. gst 6, 2008 - 10:52m — MSJMR Hv ny f y YMC nnyms bsssvs ny hrd vdnc tht rsdnts t th YMC hv cmmttd sm f th trrbl crms tht hv bn llgd. Hv y gt ny vdnc t ll. Prbbly nt, bt y wll mk t p nywy knwng y lt. gst 6, 2008 - 1:04pm — MSJMR N ths "dck" (rn't chvs rtclt) dsn't g t St Mrks. Wht slly lttl hdyh y r wht h ndd

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S rgstrng nm mks ll th dffrnc ds t Ths frm y vry wn MSJMR (Mlclm Smth) frm th St Mrks Cngrgtn Pstd: wmn ws rbbd n Lvlc r, th plc trcd th scmbg bck t th YMC, ths s th rply f yr rgstrd sr .. gst 6, 2008 - 10:52m — MSJMR Hv ny f y YMC nnyms bsssvs ny hrd vdnc tht rsdnts t th YMC hv cmmttd sm f th trrbl crms tht hv bn llgd. Hv y gt ny vdnc t ll. Prbbly nt, bt y wll mk t p nywy knwng y lt. gst 6, 2008 - 1:04pm — MSJMR N ths "dck" (rn't chvs rtclt) dsn't g t St Mrks. Wht slly lttl hdyh y r wht h ndd

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gr Htspnnrs dn't ndrstnd why thy r llwd t gt wy wth t. nd pr Jffy s pst nw bcs y hv blwn hs ckl cvr. Th mdrtr nds t pblsh st f rls nd ppl shld HV t mply srmm fr th rsns y stt bv.

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STF twt

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ths frm s STLL dsgrc. hv n d why th mdrtr llws ppl t pst nnymsly, t's nly ldng t mr snpng, mn-sprtdnss, rcsm nd gnrnc thn xstd nywy. t cld b grt lcl rsrc, bt ppl r prbbly pt ff by ll th BNP-styl rbbsh. T b fr, t's prbbly nly 1 r 2 ppl xhbtng ths knds f tttd, bt s thy r llwd t rmn nnyms t sms lk mch mr. Mk ll pstrs rgstr pls! knw n ffct hvng srnm s hrdly cncrt dntty bt t wld t lst slghtly hld ppl ccntbl fr thr rmrks. Myb y cld P bn ppl wh r thrwn ff? Hwvr, d t th s f th wrd 'mppt' n n bv pst (n nslt nt cmmnly hrd snc th 1980s), thnk n f th p*r**c*k*s s th sr frmrly knwn s 'Jzzy Jff'. ls, mdrtr, why bn swrng bt llw ppl t rn rt mkng ll srts f rcst nd xnphbc rmrks wlly nlly? ( cn sy 'wlly' cn't ?)

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Bgmc? h s yr d f rstrnt s McDnlds wll spps t mks plsnt chng frm pt ndls nd Tnnnts spr.

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njy yr Bgmc Mppt [Mr Smth] Hr y r ... Thrd – 5 Thngs lv bt Srbtn Jly 3, 2008 - 11:13m — MSJMR lv th wlk by th rvr t Kngstn nd bynd. lk th fct tht thr r s mny trns t Lndn s t mks t sr fr m t gt t wrk njy th fstvl tht s hld vry yr n Sptmbr Thr r lts f bss s wll hv mt sm nc ppl t th cngrgtn t St Mrks

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Dn't tll prks nnyms y r rlly pthtc. Wll chvs m ff t rstrnt fr lnch hp y njy yr pt ndls . C h's

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[Mr Smth], y r clrly stpd, y pstd whl bck tht y njyd th St Mrks Cngrgtn mngst thr thngs, stpdty bynd blv!

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bt thrs Smth n tht ls smwhr, Mr Smth frm th St Mrks Cngrgtn

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hv nvr bn t St Mrk's chrch wht r y n bt hdyh? Jst bcs sk f smn n hr gs dsn't tmtclly fllw tht g. N ths "dck" (rn't chvs rtclt) dsn't g t St Mrks. Wht slly lttl hdyh y r wht h ndd.

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B[fltrd wrd], s ths dck gs t chrch?

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gss tht’s wht h’s tght t St Mrks Cngrgtn

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Ys bt m knwn hr nd dntfd s MSJMR cn't y grsp tht smpl cncpt? Y jst hd bhnd yr thr nn mts. Dr m, try nd kp yr tmpr nd dn't prjct yr pthtc nscrts nd lck f bsc ndrstndng n t m. shldn't rlly b bthrng wth schlkds/chvs spps thy cn't hlp wht thy r lk.

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Y r clrly lck ntllgnc MSJMR, th 'thr' nnyms pstrs r nknwn t ll, s s MSJMR, Stv r Tnk Grl t-l !

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Y r vry cwrdly lttl prsn wh "hds" bhnd yr nnyms ttl s tht y r ndstngshbl frm yr thr ckl frnds wh r ls spnlss. Y ls rsrt t hdng bhnd thr pstrs' skrts. Y tll m yr nm nd ddrss frst thn r whch schl y g t s y hv th mntllty f rthr dstrbd dlscnt wh hs n mts nd hs t spnd th hldys nsltng ppl n th ntrnt.

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By th ntr nd cntnt f yr psts, y r clrly nt vry brght By dflt t pst n ths brd y d NT nd n ls, Y hv chsn t s n, lbt MSJMR s nt clr nd xplct dntty s y stpdly stt S y r thrfr cwrd s y kp rfrrng t nnyms pstrs S gn, MSJMR (whch s mnnglss), wht s yr rl nm nd ddrss, thn y wll nt b clssd s CWRD

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nnyms, y r mssng th pnt (n sprs thr) by pstng s MSJMR hv clr nd xplct dntty s f smn dsgrs wth m thy cn dntfy m nd d s. Thr r svrl nnyms pstrs hr s thy cnnt b dntfd. Thy ls msqrd s thr pstrs s hppnnd t Tnk Grl ystrdy.

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MSJMR, wht's yr rl nm nd ddrss?

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Have any of you YMCA anonymous obsessives any hard evidence that residents at the YMCA have committed some of the terrible crimes that have been alleged. Have you got any evidence at all. Probably not, but you will make it up anyway knowing you lot.

Yes, try and keep up

We saw the scumbags walk into the 'y' as the 'do-gooders' call it, and the cops where called, the filth were arrested. Wake up and smell the coffee!

Thr ws brk-n rbbry f flt n th Lvlc r n th 1st gst, n ldrly frl wmn wh hs lvd hr lf n, wht sh thght, ws btfl prt f Grtr Lndn THY RRSTD TH 'THNG' T TH YMC Nw tll m gn tht th 'Y' (s y rspctflly cll t) hs ny dvntg t Srbtn bcs ths lnly LDY wll nt b gng thr fr Chrstms Dnnr gn

The above text has been deliberately disemvowelled as it is in breach of the Surbiton.com terms.

Yet another sad story.

Did anyone notice the article about the YMCA in this week's Surrey Comet. It mentions the meeting that Edward Davey is planning to hold there, but limits expectation of any sort of action by constant reference to words like 'vulnerable' and phrases like 'where else are they going to go?'

I fully agree that we do not want these people living in the residential areas of Surbiton and Kingston, but the problem is a classic example of the current government' attitude - they will not stand up to people like this.

My view is that it is fair enough to try rehabilitation in schemes like this for people when they come out of prison. Surely if they abuse it, though, they should be properly punished. In the current climate, the robber from Lovelace will probably spend a couple of months in prison before being returned to the YMCA or similar.

What is going on with this forum - with people personally 'attacking each other's posts??

isnt this a DISCUSSION board whereby - SHOCK HORROR - someone may have a difference of opinion.....

what has happened to logical DISCUSSION??
isnt this a place where open and frank discussion about issues going on that affect us can be made??

WITHOUT the need to 'shout down', dismiss others opinions or just being plain rude??

or can't you reply in a logical way and have to resort to this?

or is it a way of getting people who don't share 'your' opinion to get frustrated by trying to put them and their views down or 'shut them up' and to leave to board ?

hope it serves you well in the REAL life!!! it must be nice to live in an insular bubble whereby your always right, and won't hear others !!

f y wnt sympthy fr yr stdnt nrs frnd, ths 2 psts wnt ct t! W ll hv t WRK t rn lvng nd BLD HM f R WN, tht clld .. LF! Why shld /w py fr yr stdnt frnd, wh .. qt " .. hsn't hp n hll f rntng flt lclly" bcs sh's nrs? stff tht! Qt .. "th mjrty f ppl t th Y r wll-dsrvng f th ccmmdtn" Fr wht rsn? ws rpd, bsd, nglctd nd ddn’t rn t th "Y" s y pthtclly cll t, cp n hnd fr hlp Qt .. "Sh ls cnfrmd tht lt f ths hngng rnd tsd rn't rsdnts t th YMC" Tht HR prblm nd SH shld d SMTHNG t chng th ths f th "Y" s y gn pthtclly clld t Qt .. " bt lk sm f th ppl n ths st" Tht’s wht PBLC FRMS r fr 'bn hd' Nw g nd fnd smthng ls t MN bt n PC rddn Brtn, ls fck ff t f t!

The above text has been deliberately disemvowelled as it is in breach of the Surbiton.com terms.

I've noticed that if anyone says anything reasonable on this site, or even states the facts, they are accused of being PC (the accusation of PC being the last refuge of the bigot).

Others have admitted they don't know the facts but then go on to make generalisations about 'everyone' at the YMCA being 'scum or lowlife'.

A friend of mine is a student nurse who is at the YMCA. She hasn't a hope in hell of renting a flat locally. She was not happy when I told her that she was being called scum by some of the more unpleasant people on this site.

She confirmed what someone else has pointed out - that the majority of people at the Y are well-deserving of the accomodation - for example young people escaping violent homes. They escaped that hell only to be on the receiving end of the venom spitted out by you good people of Surbiton.
Or am I being PC to say that?

She also confirmed that a lot of those hanging around outside aren't residents at the YMCA, they are homeless who prey on the more vulnerable residents.
A bit like some of the people on this site.

Your point about your student nurse friend is a good one. I hope she attends the MP's meeting when it happens......she is an 'expert' opinion who needs to be heard.

This was one of the reasons that I started this topic - to find out more about the YMCA and why it appears to be at the root of so many of Surbiton's problems.

I don't doubt that there are good people housed in the YMCA, and I also don't doubt that it offers a good range of services to the community. It cannot be denied, however, that it also attracts a lot of crime into Surbiton - either by housing criminal residents or by attracting homeless people into the town to prey on it's non-criminal ones.

just my opinion -

I am not 'speaking up or negating peoples bad behaviour' -
but having worked for 11+ years in mental health - acute / secure and drug and alcohol units -

I am often in a more privilidged postion and can get to meet the actual PERSON behind this type of behaviour / illness / addiction - and together attempt to facilitate change for the better , attempt to give them responsibility back and look at ways in which they can change their behaviour through therapy / counselling / etc, and for those who want it and are READY to change there are facilities that can offer this -

(and this is not just the pooper end of the social spectrum - who end up housed in places like the YMCA - I have 'nursed' nurses / doctors / middle management / city men and women/ people from all walks of life - addiction and mental illness can affect ANYONE)

so my opinion will be different to some one who wouldn't 'work with these peopke for less than 100K a year' -

be bloody glad people do -

as if nurses and social workers (and the poor receptionists in the YMCA - who no doubt do not have ANY training and are probably not happy (and why should they be) with the additional responsibility thrown at them) had this attitude the situation would be a danm sight worse

I have worked in various parts of the country - it is a NATIONAL problem all over - as council's have a tendancy to place 'hard to home' people all together (In B&B's / council funded properties / housing assoc / 'supported housing' YMCA's all over)
and this is the end result, it is not just places like surbiton YMCA that are affected

what is being done about this?

as mentioned in another of my posts, it is due to things like the government who are cutting / dismanteling mental health budgets, it goes way back to the Tories in the early 90's closing down long term facilities and bringing in care in the community - rendering thousands homeless -

Again I want to make it clear - that I am NOT agreeing or writing off the anti social behaviour that goes on here - but trying to be realistic

as I like living in Surbiton and think the YMCA is only a small downside to a generally nice and safe area

so what are people doing ?

other than sitting behind closed doors bitching and moaning on this forum - what proactive change can being made?

maybe this is what should be discussed on this thread ?

any ideas?

Hrd t ll bfr ......... YWN!!

The above text has been deliberately disemvowelled as it is in breach of the Surbiton.com terms.

Writing to that bone-head Davey is a waste of time, the prats party will never be in power so he's simply 'feathering his bed', that reply you got from his secretary will be the last, the reason, simple ..

Initially the YMCA rented out 2 floors to RBoK and those are mainly the rooms at the rear, smack besides the train line, walk under the rail bridge when there’s a train coming, you'll understand why those rooms are not saleable to anyone else, because that noise is what they can here in their hotel rooms (sorry hostel rooms)

Another is RBoK is a (Royal) London Borough (cross the road through the park and its lovely scum free Elmbridge) and as such has a quota to house these delinquents as long as required

Another is that since in introduction of the so called 'Blunket’s Plastic
Bobbies' (PCSO), Kingston police station could not accommodate them so a nicey nicey "we'll put PCSO's in Surbiton high street (Victoria road) was supposed make us feel better about our (most expensive) London council and police and that they were 'on the ball', in fact by putting these PCSO's in the YMCA they only resolved THEIR accommodation problem

The YMCA is here to stay, the issue is not about closing it but how to better manage it. I understood that the 'trash' that sit on the steps to the entrance in Victoria road, shouting out insults to the public as they pass was to be managed by the reception, they were supposed to reprimand the 'thing' and after several offences would be evicted, the trouble is that the staff of the YMCA are gutless to intervene, as such the problem remains and will remain until the entire management team is replaced and/or Surbiton gets an MP with backbone

There is one good thing about keeping this 'trash' in one bin and that is that at least its contained, imagine this rubbish scattered in council rentals in the Lovelace area, think about it, it could be done!

Some good points. I had not realised that there were still letting rooms available to the public. Unbelievably, you are charged £65 to share a twin room in the same building as this scum. There is also a £42.50 'single occupancy' rate, but you would have to be brave to go and stay there on your own.

I agree about better management. You cannot expect a YMCA receptionist on a low wage to go out and reprimand the type of hardened criminals they keep in there. I am surprised they can actually find anyone to work in there as it is - I would not want to deal with those people for a £100k salary.

Pushing these people further out is not the answer. A few years ago, there used to be a dodgy landlord in the Cranes Park area of Surbiton who rented out rooms in several lovely large victorian houses to similar scum. I am sure the residents of the surrounding £1m+ houses and nice flats were delighted. Finally, the housing price boom made him see sense. He turned these houses into nice flats, and started renting them out at proper rates to proper people. Hopefully, the current housing price crash will not have too many Surbiton landlords accepting the worst dross Kingston council has to offer to make ends meet.

It is a shame that we have to deal with this problem in the town centre, but it is a lot better than having it on your own front door step.

'I used to love Surbiton - Not anymore!! If I could move easily I would'

This is the sort of comment that can only strengthen the argument of most contributors here. Surbiton IS a great place to live, but the existence of the YMCA detracts so much from this that people would actually like to leave the area!

I walk walking past the YMCA earlier this week at about 4pm only to find someone 'urinating' against the wall.

Do they not have toilets inside the building?

Mind you I don't think they have much of anything inside as all of the 'wonderful' residents seem more interested in occupying the pavement outside.

I used to love Surbiton - Not anymore!! If I could move easily I would

They prefer to wait outside in case they miss someone walking past with something they can steal.

It is depressing, but as indicated in the post above, this is a national problem. You could end up moving to another area and living in house right next to these half-wits.

The problem seems worse in Surbiton, because the council has decided to house these people right in the town centre so they are more visible. Most councils probably try to house this type of problem right out of the way.

Some people may have done this already but - If I were concerned about it -
I think rather than just posting my worries here and moaning about it , or looking to petition to move 'the problem' else where

I'd actually go into the YMCA and speak to the staff / manager,

find out the facts rather than just presuming them,

as far as I'm aware there is a 'community police officer' or similar there pretty much daily - speak to them,

and then if all else fails turn up in October on Thurs 30th at 6.30pm at the YMCA and speak to Mr Davey himself about it

(Or if you cant wait a similar drop in session )

actually be proactive in how to make things better - not worse

I really dont think that by wanting to 'move it on' it will solve anything other than making some people who are already vulnerable more so, or the few that may be a nuisence out on to the streets, in to other residential areas in council funded B&B's that are already chock a block. this is a national problem that isnt just Surbiton specific, most areas have their 'YMCA' / like, it's alledigly called care in the community!

and IMO they are human beings -whether they behave rightly or wrongly, they are not in prison so by referring to them as 'inmates' is just plain snobbery !!!

Ha Ha - having just put up a thread about anon posting I realised I'd not signed in myself when I worte this (Opps! )

In repsonse to 'more info on the session' I'd mentioned

I looked on Ed Daveys website as people had said they'd attempted to contact him and either got no reply or are still awaiting one -

there are drop in sessions mentioned on his site, (4 a month, 8am, 10am or 6pm)

but one actually being held at the YMCA Thus 30th Oct at 1830,
it states :

'you are advised to contact the constituency office, on 020 8288 0296, to confirm venue details before coming to an advice session. Please also call to confirm disabled access.'

and seeing as this is what this thread is about it would make sense to actually attend that one

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