Roehampton Prostitute banned from exclusion zones

With convictions for soliciting and prostitution she faces jail if she enters exclusion zones

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Sarah Caldecott

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Sarah Caldecott has been caught soliciting in the streets around Bedford Hill in Balham and Tooting Common on numerous occasions.

This area now forms an exclusion zone and if she is caught inside the zone at any time within the next five years, she faces immediate arrest and a jail term of up to five years.

A second zone has also been formed in a wide area around her home in Tangley Grove, Roehampton. If she is caught loitering for the purposes of prostitution anywhere in this zone between now and the end of May 2014, she will be arrested and faces the same term of imprisonment.

The two zones were set up under the terms of an anti-social behaviour order against the 41-year-old as part of a joint crackdown on vice problems around Tooting Bec Common by the council and Met police.

These efforts were led by the Bedford ward safer neighbourhoods team, the council's parks police service and the borough's anti-social behaviour unit. They were responding to complaints from residents living in the Bedford Hill area and from visitors to the common about problems of kerb crawling and prostitution in the area.

Prostitutes and their clients were using people's front gardens and leaving behind used condoms and other unsavoury debris. Many female residents also had to run the gauntlet of kerb-crawling drivers whilst walking near their homes.

Other people complained that they were afraid of visiting Tooting Bec Common because of the activities of prostitutes and their "punters".

In the months following the operation, complaints about prostitution in the area declined dramatically.

The problem of prostitution and soliciting on parts of Tooting Common and the surrounding area dates back more than 100 years. It first surfaced during the Boer War when thousands of British Army troops were bivouacked on the common awaiting their deployment to South Africa .

Prostitution itself is not against the law, but it is an offence to loiter or solicit for the purposes of prostitution. These are specific offences under Section 1 of the Street Offences Act 1959.

Sgt Jill Horsfall of the Bedford Ward safer neighbourhood team said: "Although there are historical problems with prostitution dating back more than a century that does not mean that we are going to ignore it. On the contrary we are going to tackle it robustly.

" Now that she is the subject of an ASBO, Sarah Caldecott should not be under any illusions about what will happen to her if she is spotted anywhere near Tooting Common or caught soliciting in Roehampton and West Putney."

Exclusion Area in Putney & Roehampton

The council's spokesman on community safety Cllr James Cousins said: "Through a combination of hard graft, good intelligence and close partnership work with the police and local residents, we have been able to target a prolific offender and curb her behaviour.

" Street prostitution can have a devastating impact on the lives of families who live in affected areas and that is why we conducted these joint operations with the police to reclaim these streets."

The Wandsworth parks police service was formed by the council in 1985 and currently employs 24 officers. It employs both uniformed and plain clothed officers for undercover operations, and offers a 24 hour service seven days a week. To contact them telephone (020) 8871 7532.

The borough's anti-social behaviour unit was set up to provide the community with effective solutions to this form of behaviour. Anyone experiencing problems of this nature can get advice and assistance from the unit. Council tenants or leaseholders should call (020) 8871 6829. People living in privately-owned accommodation should call (020) 8871 8894 or visit .


July 6, 2009