Council investigating if more work could be done to stop suicides at Halifax bridge

Calderdale Council has been urged to do more to prevent people from taking their own lives at North Bridge in Halifax.

Monday, 20th September 2021, 11:43 am
North Bridge in Halifax

Assistant coroner Ian Pears has reportedly written to the council asking it to explain what measures are in place to stop people dying by suicide there.

His letter comes after an inquest into 24-year-old Brighouse woman Chloe English's death in May.

Calderdale Council’s Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Strategy, Councillor Jane Scullion, said the council is investigating whether any more safety work could be carried out at the bridge.

“This was a tragic event and our thoughts and condolences are of course with Chloe’s family and friends," she said.

"The impact of suicide can be devastating, and we do all we can to prevent it.

"A range of permanent safety measures were installed on North Bridge in 2019, including fencing, signage and CCTV.

"Anti-climb mesh and new sloping metal covers have also been installed to reduce accessibility to the bridge’s parapets.

"We’re currently assessing if any additional safety work could be carried out to the structure.

“As a council we continue to work with partner organisations to put measures in place which are shown to reduce suicides. This includes suicides in public places.

"The evidence shows us that reducing access to methods is one of the most effective measures in reducing the number of suicides.

"This is an important part of Calderdale’s Suicide Prevention Plan, alongside providing the right training, support and tailored approaches to improving mental health in specific groups.

“The new website, https://suicidepreventionwestyorkshire.co.uk/, is dedicated to helping people with suicidal thoughts and those concerned for the mental wellbeing of anyone who lives in West Yorkshire.”

When life is difficult, help is available from the Samaritans day or night, 365 days a year. You can call them for free on 116 123, email them at [email protected], or visit www.samaritans.org to find your nearest branch.

Help is also available from the following groups: Open Mind Calderdale - http://openmindscalderdale.org.ukHealthy Minds Calderdale - http://healthymindscalderdale.co.uk

Kooth (for young people aged 10 to 25)- https://kooth.com

Unmasked Mental Health - https://unmaskedmentalhealth.co.uk

Andy's Man Club (for men) - Meet ever Monday evening at venues around Calderdale. Twitter | Instagram: @andysmanclubuk and Facebook: /AndysManClub