Residents of a city centre community have raised concerns that drugs are being sold openly – and police are taking “no action”.
Shock minutes of a recent George Street community council meeting showed that it was “generally felt” that narcotics were not a “high priority” for the force.
Complaints about drug taking in the city centre community are understood to have been rising for a number of years.
The document adds: “As things stand now, the dealers are getting away with selling drugs openly, people are taking drugs openly, tenants are reporting drug dealing and nothing is being done about it.
“We are always encouraged by the police to report any incidences we see but it is so disheartening to report and report again and again with no action being taken for very obvious misdemeanours.”
Last night George Street and Harbour conservative councillor Ryan Houghton wrote to the police on the residents’ concerns.
He wrote: “Over a growing period, concerns over drug use and associated problems are on the rise in and around the George Street Community Council locality.
“… it was raised that drugs were being bought and sold around the local area with what seems like little police presence as a deterrent.”
He concludes his letter by inviting the top police officer to a meeting to discuss concerns.
Kittybrewster community policing team Inspector Steve Robertson said: “Tackling drug dealing and abuse is not just about police enforcement. We all need to work together to address why people become involved in dealing and abusing drugs in order to end the cycle.
“We are committed to listening to the concerns of our local communities and know that illegal drug activity is not welcome. We will proactively take all the action we can to disrupt this type of activity.
“We rely on the support of our communities to do this and continue to urge anyone with information or concerns to report these to the police on 101. Crimestoppers can be contacted on 0800 555 111 to remain anonymous. No piece of information will be considered too small or irrelevant so report any suspicious activity you see to us and let us decide if it is something we can use.”
George Street was once one of Aberdeen’s major shopping and leisure draws – boasting major retailers, a cinema, independent bars and a bowling alley.
And with the major employer Broadford Works being based in the area, it was also a key residential quarter with thousands of skilled workers living in its granite tenements.
But in recent years, fortunes have turned for the area with empty shop units now lining much of the street and many of the new residents being transitory students.
As with city centre areas across the UK, a sense of community is vanishing.
At last month’s meeting of the George Street Community Council residents made their feelings clear about the problem with drugs.
According to minutes released, locals believe it is generally felt that narcotics were “not a high priority” for the police.
They said that they report their concerns “again and again” but no action is taken.
The police have since reassured residents they investigate all concerns raised.
City centre business body Aberdeen Inspired view George Street as a potential growth area and a popular farmer’s market has sprung up recently.
Ambitious plans for the £100million redevelopment of Broadford Works are also taking shape.
The Press and Journal took a walk around the area and witnessed what appeared to be multiple drug deals being carried out.
Our photographer reported seeing at least two suspicious deals taking place in daylight on the street where money changed hands and substances appeared to be swapped.
A small street scuffle also broke out during his short walk up the street.
In a situation more akin to the red light district of Amsterdam than the shopping district of Aberdeen, meanwhile, at about 4pm our photographer was approached by a man and openly offered cocaine.
Despite his expensive camera equipment and the fact it was 4pm on a dreich Wednesday, the dealer thought he had spotted a mark with our man.