Progress statement – March 2020
Last year the Home Office awarded the Office of the Sussex Police and Crime Commissioner (OPCC) funding to work with Hastings Borough Council (HBC) and partners to tackle burglary and theft in St Leonards. This has been an excellent initiative to deliver situational crime prevention interventions and image improvements to the area. Over 100 homes and 30 retail businesses have received security upgrades to help deter acquisitive crime. Selected Alleys have been gated to reduce ASB activity. The projects also funded community organising work in the area, listening to the views of local people, and resourced community initiatives to improve the appearance of the neighbourhood such as the mural project at Goat Ledge and Tidy Up St Leonards’ clean-ups.
One of the potential proposals was for the enhancement of the current CCTV facility in the public areas of central St. Leonards. Due to a number of constraints this part of the programme is being suspended as it requires further consideration; however we are pleased to announce CCTV for individual businesses to secure their property is going ahead.
The Community Organising team did hear from many people through door-knocking, online surveys, and follow-up conversations. Local Cllrs Trevor Webb and Ruby Cox have been encouraged by the care people have shown for their neighbourhood. “This community understands that tackling crime is also about tackling difficult issues of exclusion over time. We think this short project has shown that local people want to take on that responsibility for the long haul. If you think we could find a way to work together and get something off the ground, we want to hear from you.”
For those residents who may wish to be involved in oversight of CCTV across Hastings & St Leonards in the future, they are encouraged to join an oversight group involving Sussex Police, HBC Councillors and the BCRP which will meet every three months.