Oldham town centre is safe, insists Council leader

Date published: 17 July 2018

The leader of Oldham Council has insisted that Oldham town centre is a safe place to frequent and enjoy despite a number of violent incidents taking place there in the last few months.

Councillor Sean Fielding was speaking days after a 36-year old man, Stephen McGiffen, was attacked on Yorkshire Street during the early hours of Friday (July 13).

It was the latest incident in the town centre this year with a man suffering stab wounds in his head after being attacked near Liquid and Envy nightclub back in March.

However, Councillor Fielding claims these incidents are the exception to the rule.

Speaking to Revolution 96.2, he said: “Generally speaking Oldham town centre remains a safe place.

"On top of that, to ensure that people do feel safe and have the reassurance that they need to come into Oldham town centre and feel like they’re going to have a good experience, we have additional patrols particularly on public transport to give that reassuring presence and make people more confident about their own safety when they come into the town.”

Away from the town centre, Oldham has found itself in the headlines on the Metrolink too, with incidents taking place, including one where a man was dragged across the platform at Freehold Station and attacked.

These have led to people seemingly losing confidence in coming into the town centre - many have taken to the Chronicle's Facebook page declaring the area as a no-go for anyone.

That’s something Councillor Fielding dismissed out of hand.

He said: “For everyone person who says something like that there’s another 20 people that have confidence in the town and come and visit it.

"While people can have legitimate concerns it’s just not a fair reflection of reality to say that Oldham is a no-go zone and I say that as someone who is here every day, more or less every day and frequently here until very late.”

Oldham Council are set to announce new events and schemes aimed at getting people into the town centre to see what’s on offer in the hope that they’ll come back again and again.

Do you have a story for us? Want to tell us about something going on in and around Oldham? Let us know by emailing , calling our Oldham-based newsroom on 0161 633 2121 , tweeting us @oldhamchronicle or messaging us through our Facebook page. All contact will be treated in confidence.