Outcry at plan to move recovering addicts accommodation to Balby

The New Beginnings, Balby. Picture: Andrew Roe
The New Beginnings, Balby. Picture: Andrew Roe

Residents have hit out after plans to relocate sheltered accommodation services for recovering drug and alcohol addicts were unveiled.

New Beginnings, which provides temporary accommodation for recovering addicts in Doncaster, confirmed a range of potential sites were being considered for the facility.

But residents living near one of the earmarked sites, in Greenfield Lane, Balby, say they have security fears and worry crime could increase in the area if the plans are given the go ahead.

New Beginnings is considering relocating its accommodation services from Marshal Avenue in Balby to a derelict building in Greenfield Lane – formerly a care home.

Councillor and Deputy Mayor Glyn Jones has asked for plans to be halted until further information is made available to residents who say they have been kept in the dark.

One concerned resident, who has been living on the street for 30 years and did not want to be named, said: “There is a fear among residents that this could affect security on the street and we are also concerned that choosing a location close to a bargain booze shop, two betting shops, a loan shop, two pubs and three chemists will be providing too much temptation for people who are recovering from addictions – it’s just not the right area.”

The issue is set to be discussed at a Balby PACT meeting and residents are calling for a meeting with Riverside, the company behind New Beginnings, before plans progress.

Coun Jones said: “I understand that some residents have concerns so I have asked that this process be paused while the full range of options is reviewed and there can be conversations with the local community.”

Wendy Heritage-Stevens, area manager at Riverside, said: “Our existing New Beginnings service has been running successfully in the local community for over 10 years and we are only relocating it as the NHS premises we are currently at will no longer be available.

“Currently we are conducting public consultation on various options for where the service could move to and we will be keeping the local community informed and involved.”

New Beginnings provides temporary accommodation to individuals with a history of drug misuse and addictions.

Service users receive 24-hour support as part of the project with an emphasis on relapse prevention.