Churches set to install weapons bins

Leaders of Chapeltown and Harehills Churches Together (CHCT) have come together to help tackle and reduce violent crime in Leeds with the planned installation of two specialist weapon bins.

Leaders of Chapeltown and Harehills Churches Together (CHCT) have come together to help tackle and reduce violent crime in Leeds with the planned installation of two specialist weapon bins.

Revd Nicholas lo Polito, incumbent at Potternewton with Little London and member of the CHCT, said: "Like everyone else in the country, the members of Christian churches in Chapeltown and Harehills have been deeply saddened and worried at the tragic loss of young lives to violent crime in the streets of Leeds.

"Knife crime has risen in Leeds by 32 per cent in the last few years, with the highest peaks in the LS7 and LS8 areas.

“Our congregations are often directly affected by such violence and we feel it is time to go beyond the daily pastoral care of victims and their families; these bins are a vital step forward.”

Police figures show knife crime up by a third in Leeds since 2016 and the churches and their congregations are following the lead of Sheffield and London in the hope the bins provide an opportunity to change and save young lives.

Each weapon safely disposed of has the power to save at least two lives, both of the potential victim and of the perpetrator.

Following discussions with West Yorkshire Police and local youth workers, the secure bins will be installed and promoted in Chapeltown and Harehills to encourage the anonymous drop off of weapons.

Each of these bins costs £4,000 to professionally construct, install and maintain for a year and CHCT is hoping the community will step up to help fund and maintain them moving forward.

There is a Just Giving page set up for anyone wishing to support the project. Click here to view the page.

Knife