Police and Communities Together Meeting (PACT)
(Formerly Police Ward Meeting)
Friday, 21 August 2009
With many apologies for the late submission of this update. It is good however to be able to report that the last PACT (Police And Communities Together) meeting attracted a number of new faces who all contributed to a very lively and interesting discussion. With many thanks to PCSO Ed Webb who held the fort on his own on behalf of the Police as a result of the unavoidable absence of any other officers on this occasion.
Reporting back on the three priorities of the last 6 weeks PCSO Webb gave updates as follows:
A question was asked around the availability of mobile CCTV facilities and Cllr Battye agreed to raise the possibility of this with Inspector Oldham.
An observation was made by a resident that people of all ages regularly visit Marshalls Bar. PCSO Webb confirmed that all the pubs in the town are in the Pub Watch scheme and that visits are regularly made.
The police are looking at the possibility of the Neighbourhood Policing Teams being based within one station instead of the three currently (Sowerby Bridge, Hebden Bridge and Todmorden). There is the possibility of the base moving to Hebden Bridge which would result in more officers being around and about the town at various times of the day meaning an increased police presence could be available quickly on occasions if required.
23 crimes had been reported to the Police over the 6 week period and these covered a full range of offences. At a burglary in Heptonstall a large amount of alcohol which had been on display had been stolen and appropriate advice had been given. There had been three instances of damage to motor vehicles and one theft of a number plate.
Arrests of note included two for assault plus one following a domestic incident in the town centre.
Two local men have been issued with a £50 fixed penalty notice for street drinking having failed to heed a previous warning.
It was felt that there were difficulties when reporting issues via Wakefield with a lack of local knowledge of initial contacts. PCSO Webb confirmed that although there was a prioritisation system, all information was relayed back to local officers quickly. There was also the usual option to call 999 for really urgent incidents – crime in progress etc/accident and emergency etc.
A combination of punishment, behaviour modification and engineering solutions were seen as the tools with which this could be tackled. One engineering suggestion was the creation of gateways at each end of the town. It was felt that there was a need for a co-ordinated approach across the whole area and involving the Police and Calderdale MBC Highways department. Cllr Battye agreed to take the matter to the Hebden Bridge Partnership with a view to asking for the issue to be flagged up to the Police Authority on behalf of the Partnership.
This prompted a comment about the seemingly excessive use of sirens when emergency vehicles are travelling down the valley which seems to have increased lately. One reason for this is the use of responder vehicles that are sent to an accident/emergency in advance of an ambulance as these are less likely to get held up by traffic. The ambulance will then follow on behind, potentially also using the siren. Whilst the topography of the area does not help with this perception the meeting asked for the issue to be flagged up to the relevant authorities.
PC Martin Langan will be asked for an update on the position re the suggested provision of signs to deter off road motor cyclists at Mount Skip as he is dealing with this matter.
Praise was given to the work of the Street Angels and thanks expressed to the volunteers who gave up their time in order to operate this initiative. The increased police presence on park as also positively noted and appreciated.
Three priorities set for the next 6 weeks were:
The next meeting will be held in the Committee Room at the Council Offices on Tuesday, 15th September at 6:30 pm. As usual, everyone is welcome and encouraged to attend. Please come along and join the increasing number of local residents who are working with the police in setting regular priorities to help ensure the town is a pleasant, safe area in which to live and work.
Hebweb News: community meeting with local police (June 09)
Hebweb News: community meeting with local police (May 09)
Hebweb News: community meeting with local police (April 09)
Hebweb News: Sharp fall in Hebden Bridge crime rate (Jan 09)