We found Mike from Gosport – and he is sticking to his view that the town is ‘unsafe’
THE man who sparked a political row after his comments on 'unsafe Gosport' were read out by Jeremy Corbyn in parliament has said: 'It's just my opinion.’
Mike from Gosport's question was put to prime minister Theresa May by the Labour leader in the House of Commons on Wednesday - with police and others insisting the town is safe.
Now Mike has spoken to The News and said: 'If it draws people's attention to Gosport and crime figures and putting a semi-permanent police force in this town it can't be a bad thing.'
The married 62-year-old Labour member, who lives in the Leesland ward, was born in the borough and has lived in the area on and off since he was born.
He said that '99.9 per cent of people in Gosport are hard-working people' but added there is an 'enclave who continually commit crime' and get away with it.
Figures published by The News on Thursday reveal a hike in crime in Gosport since 2010.
Hampshire police said there has been a drop this January compared to 12 months ago.
Strident Mike, who gave the interview on the basis his surname would not be published, added: 'If I wanted to pose a question to somebody it couldn't have been done in a better place.
'I do think crime levels have gone up - I've lived here since I was born in 1962.
'Gosport was a very quiet place - it was 80 per cent military and 20 per cent people born and bred in Gosport but if you look around and listen to people on Facebook - and crimes committed, house burglaries, car thefts... it's a massive jump.
'There's a crime wave, maybe not knife crime but not certainly petty crime and aggressive begging and homeless, which 10 years ago you never saw.'
He praised efforts by PCSOs who 'do a good job but don't have the powers' - but slammed the short opening times of the police front counter at Gosport Borough Council's town hall since the police station shut.
Response officers are based at Fareham Reach, which is in Gosport but yards away from the boundary with Fareham.
Local government worker Mike added: 'I'm only stating my opinion, I don't speak for the people of Gosport, they've got their own voices too.'