A petition to install street lighting in “unsafe” Crookes Valley Park has just been launched in response to fear in the community.
Amelia Hancock, a staff member at the local Dam House pub, created the petition because she feared further attacks.
She said on the website: “This unlit park has a serious risk of sexual violence and drownings for the many who travel through or use our green space after sunset.
“Our well-used park cannot be an afterthought, we cannot wait for the next horrifying publicised incident to try to scare our representatives into action.
“By adding pathway lights the council will continue Sheffield’s proud tradition of investing in and enjoying our exceptional green spaces. Lighting the park will extend opportunities for sport, play, exercise, commerce, and provide environmentally friendly commuter routes, but most importantly it will enable our community to keep itself safe.”
A man in his 20s tragically drowned whilst swimming in the reservoir at the park in July of 2021. Although this is not thought to be related to any violent incidents.
According to police data there were six reported violent crimes in the park area, and at least five more on the adjacent Mushroom Lane between January and October 2021.
Mae Wallace, 20, a student from Sheffield said: “I really believe that the street lighting is necessary, it is such a dark area. I feel vulnerable and unsafe at night.”
Caimpaigners said the path lighting would act as a crime deterrent because it would increase the chances of a witness to crime events and could lead to more positive identification of perpetrators.
As well as crime prevention lighting could also save lives by stopping people from slipping into the water or making it more likely that they get spotted.
Not everyone thinks the park needs to be changed.
Iesha Price, 20, of Conduit Road, believes the park is safe enough, saying: “I don’t understand why people are complaining, I’ve never felt uncomfortable whilst in the park.”
The council have been contacted for comment but have so far not replied.