A LIST of 50 ‘key addresses’ in Athersley has been compiled to help police protect Royal Mail workers from the risk of dangerous dogs after the area was highlighted as one of the worst in the country for attacks.

At a police meeting held on October 21, it was revealed that the Royal Mail had collected a list of households that could potentially contain dangerous dogs, and these will be used by officers going forward.

In May, it was revealed that Athersley was the second-worst place in the country for the rate of attacks and a data-gathering project saw 167 dogs identified on just one round in Athersley - 60 of which were deemed to be dangerous.

But earlier this month, Sgt David Baines, who chaired the meeting, said: “The Royal Mail has given us a list of 50 key addresses that have raised concerns regarding the behaviour of dogs.

“We are intelligence-building at the moment and are sending the list to the council. This is the latest effort to tackle these concerns.”

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Having issued a warning before last Christmas, a period associated with more dog attacks due to the rush to deliver cards and presents to homes, bosses told the Chronicle that 2019 has continued to be blighted by concerns lodged by workers.

In the summer 183 Barnsley properties were blacklisted by Royal Mail due to suspected dangerous dogs.

Andrew Kipling, from the Communication Workers’ Union (CWU), said positives steps forward have been taken since they worked with the Royal Mail and made their findings public.

“This was the idea of the South Yorkshire Police to compile 50 key addresses around Athersley to attempt to speak to the respective tenants working alongside Berneslai Homes,” he added.

“On a positive note last year, Athersley North was the highest impacting area within Barnsley with 84 per cent of dog attacks on postal workers taking place in this area.

“Since April, following the joint work with Royal Mail, the CWU, police and Berneslai Homes, plus the support given to us by the Barnsley Chronicle, we have so far only seen one of our people bitten in Athersley North.”

Wendy Lowder, executive director for adults and communities, added: “Royal Mail, the police and partners are continuing to share intelligence to ensure that workers are safe on their rounds and also to make sure that residents are reminded of their responsibilities for animals while in their property.”