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WHAT an incredible transformation.

Once not fit even for rats, with burnt out cars, boarded up smashed windows and graffiti-ridden stairwells, it was no wonder Shorters Avenue in Warstock got its nickname The Basra of Birmingham.

No one in 21st Century Britain deserved to be housed in such a slum, living in fear of rampaging gangs of yobs and having to hide behind locked doors.

But after the Birmingham Mail exposed the hideous living conditions five years ago, Birmingham City Council swung into action and did what was long needed - created homes fit for people to live in.

Now the people of Shorters Avenue rightly have somewhere they are proud to call home.

And with their new-found feeling of pride, it is now up to these residents to make sure that the new apartments, bungalows and houses remain in the gleaming condition that leaves them so happy.

They have the responsibility for future generations to ensure Shorters Avenue is never compared to a war zone.

FEW would expect violence to erupt at the height of rush hour and in a crowded city centre street.

But today a young man lies gravely ill in hospital after being stabbed in the neck in front of commuters in Upper Bull Street in the very heart of Birmingham.

What does it say about the state of 21st century Britain that there are people not only armed with knives, but ready to brazenly use them in front of innocent passers-by and the ever watchful gaze of CCTV cameras?

Thankfully, such incidents are extremely rare.

But the thugs must be left in no doubt that the streets belong to decent, law-abiding people - not gangs ready to spill blood.

When the man who carried out yesterday's attack is caught, let there be no mercy. Jail him and throw away the key.
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Title Annotation:Leaders
Publication:Birmingham Mail (England)
Date:Oct 9, 2008
Previous Article:Closer to our neighbours.
Next Article:Letter: Your Say - Foul rap gives me creeps.

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