In July, as a result of successful bids submitted to the Home Office’s Safer Streets Campaign by her office, the area of High Town in Luton was one of two successful bids funded, the second being Midland Road in Bedford. High Town has been awarded £448,150, which will be spent in areas such as enhancing street light, CCTV coverage, new gating for alleyways to prevent burglaries, fly tipping and on street sexual exploitation and bespoke crime prevention advice for both residents and businesses.
The Neighbourhood Watch Scheme will enable the community to join the project and be a key factor in helping the community feel safe and united in the fight against crime and anti-social behaviour. Members of the scheme will be asked to work in pairs at a safe distance (unless they are from the same household) to patrol their community and maintain a presence to discourage crime and pass on vital information which will help Bedfordshire Police and Luton Borough Council to identify areas of concern.
“The funding awarded to tackle community safety is a huge win for my office and the local authority, which is why we must do everything to ensure every penny is spent effectively and has a lasting impact on the area. It makes perfect sense to me that we work closely with residents and business owners who live and work in the area every single day, to join the project and influence how the money is spent and how we move forward to create lasting change and community safety.
“The community of High Town coming together is a fantastic way to help us achieve this goal and I hope many residents come on board. They are the eyes and ears on the ground. They know the area best and can provide vital information to the project and of course to the police,” said PCC Holloway.
Luton Neighbourhood Enforcement Team will also be supporting four days of action in October and conducting patrols within High Town, to identify environmental crime, such as fly tipping.
Sergeant Sarah Hudson from the Luton Community Policing team at Bedfordshire Police said: “We work very closely with all of the Neighbourhood Watch Schemes across the county, who are invaluable in providing us with vital information and insight to crime taking place in our communities.
“These groups are a fantastic way of working together to ensure your community is a safe and great place to live.
“I would encourage anyone who would like to support and protect High Town to get involved in the Neighbourhood Watch Scheme in this area and unite with other local residents.”
Cllr Jacqui Burnett, portfolio holder responsible for Safer and Stronger Communities said: “The council already works in partnership with Neighbourhood Watch in other areas of the town and this has proven to have a positive impact. The scheme is not only really important in helping prevent crime and anti-social behaviour, but also supports with enhancing the community engagement and improving social capital – the social networking and bonding within an area because it allows residents and businesses to come together and share what is happening where they live and work.
“This is a really positive step as it will support the other initiatives taking place under the Safer Street Fund, in really making sustainable changes in High Town.”
If you are interested in being a part of the Neighbourhood Watch Scheme in High Town, please email: SSFCoordinator@luton.gov.uk