These are the infamous "Rosehill steps" in my neighbourhood. The
council went ahead with the scheme and spent £15,000 to modify a set
of steps to make them uncomfortable as seating, so as to deter alleged
anti-social behaviour (read: sitting and talking) by young people.
Half a mile away, the same council is proposing to spend at least £4
million on a facility that will include a high-tech virtual street
environment, a "street simulator" if you like, to teach safety and
good behaviour to some of the same young people.
"An innovative 'walk-in virtual world' is one feature of the proposed
Sutton Life Centre, a multi-million pound facility that aims to raise
young people's awareness of personal safety and citizenship, and bring
quality community facilities under one roof.
Part movie-set, part theme park, the learning complex will be the
first of its kind in the UK and will also house an indoor street with
shop fronts, pavements and a road. The idea is to give young people
the confidence to make the best of their lives and have a positive
impact on their peers and their local community."