by Clare Fletcher
Yesterday (29.05.2018), three members of our local party attended the Community Policing Meeting at the Civic Centre.
Community Policing Meetings have been running in the borough for a number of years, although not always well publicised. Regular meetings take place in different areas focusing on a group of wards. Last night’s meeting was focussed on the town centre wards of Kursaal, Milton, and Victoria.
Over thirty people attended the meeting; including a mix of local residents, ward councillors, and representatives from community groups.
The meeting opened with a brief report of local crime statistics which would suggest there has been a reduction in crime in the local area:
|Ward||Last Year||Current Year|
Robberies are down in all 3 wards, while dwelling burglaries have fallen in Kursaal and Milton wards but have increased in Victoria Ward from last year.
In the 8 weeks since the last meeting, there has been no increase in either Victoria or Kursaal Wards but an increase in Milton Ward.
The Police spoke of several local initiatives that had been dealing with local issues such as prostitution, whereby a combination of patrols working in a multi-agency approach has been treating Women as victims and not as offenders to try and tackle the issue.
Reassuring residents after the recent number of stabbings in the Town Centre, the Police also spoke of other local operations which have recently seen an increase in on-the-street Police presence in the areas around the High Street and The Forum.
Also recently deployed were initiatives such as the controversial Stop and Search powers (weapons searches) and a close working partnership with the Active Citizens.
Over the next couple of months, the Police are planning several Action Days with similar week-long events, with the Only Cowards Carry group is also scheduled to visit The Forum to engage with the youth in the area soon.
The meeting took place in a circular format and everyone was given the opportunity to raise any issues that they wanted to bring to the meeting.
The meeting saw most of the attendees raising the same issue about different locations across the three wards; Drug dealing and Drug Use on our streets.
Details were taken of the locations that were raised as being issues, and the police and community teams were subsequently keen to increase patrols and engagement in the areas raised.
It was decided at the meeting that the issue of Drugs would be a priority going forward for policing in Victoria, Milton, and Kursaal Wards.
The Police assured attendees that they would be accountable and would answer all questions about priority and other issues at future meetings.
The next meeting for these three wards will be held at 19:00 on Monday 30 July.
Details of meetings for this and other areas can be found at: