“I work for a local engineering company. I am seriously pissed off. Twice I have sent my engineers to Holbeck in the past week. And twice they have been propositioned by these ‘ladies’. They work bloody hard, my engineers and shouldn’t have to be hounded by prostitutes. First time there were two engineers in one van on their way to my house to pick something up. Second time it was my tanker driver. He stopped to wait for a break in the traffic because of the sheer size of the tanker and she climbed up on the ladders to offer him sex.”
“I was walking down Garnet Road (not near the “zone”) one afternoon after visiting Monster Kids with my 8 year old daughter and 5 year old niece. The business area on the left as we walked down had in the back area a prostitute injecting a man in the groin. My eight year old said “err mam what was that?”
“I work at the wharf on Neville street Leeds and walk down Water Lane from the Ingram gardens estate every morning and evening . There are now three of us (sometimes 4) meeting every evening to walk home together as each one of us has been approached by punters on our way home (may I add not until we reach the top of water lane / czsar street.) I personally have been approached at 4.30 in the afternoon, out of the area and time for the zone, we’re all sick of it.”
“I was in my office at lunchtime when staff started calling me to come. They had spotted a couple having sex outside. On our land! I ran outside with my camera and confronted them. You can see my report to Save Our Eyes here.”
I don’t work in the zone but my shop is in Holbeck. Due to the harassment and presence of prostitutes and pimps in the area I no longer feel safe to be in my shop alone. A man was stabbed and thrown on my shop steps on a Saturday afternoon. Due to prostitutes in the house next door we saw fights, swearing, drinking and inappropriate behaviour. As you can imagine I lost customers.
One Saturday lunch time, a man visiting my shop was flashed at by a drunk prostitute. She was in the street without underwear, lifting up her dress to show passing men.
Even the churches are not safe. A local resident told us about a prostitute who attended a local church to steal from the worshippers.
“Got to church, City Evangelical, this morning and sat at back with my son. I noticed the woman in front of us had matted hair and was lolling back and forward in a state. She had Layla tattooed across back of her neck.
She kept leaning forward with a jumper over her hands and trying to pickpocket coats of folks in front, so a lady turned round and lent her the coat as she said she was cold. She passed out for rest of service in her seat.
We woke her with a cup of sugary coffee and she ate her body weight in apple pie, profiteroles and biscuits while people chatted with her, she said she was from Ireland. She was constantly looking around. She got up and went to sit further forwards then put a ladies handbag under her cardigan and went for the exit. As she passed me to leave I grabbed the strap of the bag and said she’d have to leave it and we had a brief tussle! She let go and ran out. I returned the bag to its owner and called the managed approach dedicated number.
A police officer on a bicycle came 5 mins later and said he’d just seen her down the road and sent a car to pick her up. It was a well known local prostitute. The lady whose bag was taken wouldn’t press charges but police said they’d give her a talking to… where’s that bolt of lightning from the heavens when you need it?”
Find out what day to day life is really like in Holbeck. Read 24 hours in Holbeck: A day in the strife of local residents.
Save Our Eyes campaigns for the rights of all Leeds residents whose lives are blighted by the “managed approach to prostitution” which is currently located in the Holbeck area and spreading to other parts of the city.
We aim to become a community where residents are not subjected to daily harassment from kerb crawlers, prostituted women, danger from discarded condoms, needles and sex industry litter.
We aim to see prostituted women freed from the grips of a drug addiction that was created to enslave them. We recognise that the women who are prostituted would rather lead different lives and we support their wishes to exit the sex industry.
Both sides in this dispute want the same outcome: a peaceful life free from prostitution and abuse.