Barry Coppinger, Cleveland PCC with allotment holders and Hartlepool Police Cadets giving out padlock alarms
Gardeners on an arson-hit allotment site in Hartlepool have been urged to protect their plots by taking advantage of free crime prevention equipment funded by the Police and Crime Commissioner for Cleveland, Barry Coppinger.
The campaign, called Operation Scarecrow, has seen the Commissioner join forces with Hartlepool Borough Council’s Allotment Service and Community Safety Team, Cleveland Police and Cleveland Fire Brigade to improve security at Thornhill Allotments.
Cleveland Police cadets have received training from Victim Services Officer Lorna Hilton from the Community Safety Team which has enabled them to provide crime prevention advice to allotment tenants.
The third and final phase of Operation Scarecrow saw the cadets giving away free shed locks, funded by the Commissioner, which are ideal for protecting equipment such as tools and lawn mowers.
Mr Coppinger said: “Schemes such as this, which see agencies joining forces to tackle a community safety issue, demonstrate the effectiveness of partnership working.
“It’s great to see the cadets getting out and about in the local community and really getting involved in what matters to local residents. They are a fantastic bunch of young people who are committed to improving their local area and they are a credit to the Police and to their families.”
PC Steph Button of Hartlepool Neighbourhoods said: “Offences of arson, theft, criminal damage and burglary at allotments are a continuing problem in the area and tend to increase in the spring and summer as people bring equipment and belongings onto their allotment sites.
“We are working with the police cadets to improve awareness amongst the allotment holders of the vulnerabilities the allotment sites have and to provide them with alarmed locks for their allotment sheds.”
The shed locks were funded from the Commissioner’s Community Safety Initiatives Fund which was created to support local communities, neighbourhoods and individuals in tackling crime and antisocial behaviour in local communities. For more details on how to apply for funding go to: www.cleveland.pcc.police.uk/Decisions/Commissioning.aspx
Posted on Thursday 25th June 2015