Nuneaton Telegraph - - FRONT PAGE -

THE tragic deaths of Corey and Casper Platt-May, fa­tal stab­bings, and the on­go­ing Ri­coh Arena row have been high­lighted among Coven­try’s big­gest con­cerns from 2018.

The death of young brothers Corey and Casper in a hit-and-run in Fe­bru­ary was “one of the worst sit­u­a­tions this year”, Coven­try City Coun­cil leader Coun­cil­lor Ge­orge Dug­gins said.

Stab­bings, in­clud­ing the deaths of 16-year-old Jay­don James and Fidel Glas­gow, have also high­lighted a need for part­ner­ship work­ing be­tween the po­lice, coun­cil and schools, he added.

But suc­cess­ful mu­sic fes­ti­vals in Coven­try, be­ing named as the UK’s Euro­pean City of Sport for 2019, and work on new sports fa­cil­i­ties are among the pos­i­tives from the year, Cllr Dug­gins said.

The author­ity’s leader picked out a num­ber of pluses and pos­i­tives for the city when look­ing back on 2018.

Brothers Corey, six, and two-yearold Casper, were hit by a car which was driv­ing at more than 60mph on Fe­bru­ary 22.

The tragic in­ci­dent led to the coun­cil agree­ing to spend £120,000 on a road safety scheme in Longfel­low Road fol­low­ing pe­ti­tions of more than 4,600 sig­na­tures.

Cllr Dug­gins said: “We were all touched in Fe­bru­ary by the tragic loss of Casper and Corey Platt-May. That im­pacted on ev­ery­thing.

“I can re­mem­ber the next day my­self and the Lord Mayor went to sign the con­do­lences book at the cathe­dral – there was a city in griev­ing.

“That was one of the worst sit­u­a­tions that we have had this year and I think that is some­thing that ev­ery­body in the city felt was the case.”

Drug driver, Robert Brown, 53, was jailed for 10 and a half years, and found dead in prison on Christ­mas Day.

School­boy Jay­don James was stabbed to death just be­fore mid­night on Satur­day, Novem­ber 24, while out with friends in Deed­more Road, Wood End. His death was the third in 2018 that came as a re­sult of an in­ci­dent in­volv­ing a knife in Coven­try.

Daniel Ken­nell died af­ter be­ing found with se­ri­ous in­juries in Wyken in July and Fidel Glas­gow, the grand­son of Coven­try ska leg­end Neville Sta­ple, died af­ter he was stabbed out­side Club M in Septem­ber.

Cllr Dug­gins said: “The re­cent stab­bings in the city is a ma­jor con­cern and we sent con­do­lences as both my­self and the Lord Mayor.

“This is con­cern­ing and there is a need for part­ner­ship work­ing be­tween our­selves, po­lice, schools and any­one else who be­lieves they can help ad­dress this par­tic­u­lar is­sue.

“It is sad and a tragic loss of young lives.”

The row over the Ri­coh Arena car­ried on this year as Coven­try City’s own­ers Sisu con­tin­ued their le­gal chal­lenge over the coun­cil’s sta­dium sale.

Sisu claim the city coun­cil un­der­val­ued the site by £27m when it was sold to Wasps in 2014.

Coven­try City’s agree­ment to play at the sta­dium comes to an end this sea­son, and Wasps in­sist they won’t en­ter into talks un­less the club’s own­ers cease their le­gal ac­tion against them.

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