A new suicide prevention sign has been installed at the base of Huntcliff in Saltburn in a bid to reduce the number of people taking their own life.
Representatives from the Teesside Samaritans, the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner, Cleveland Police, public health and the National Trust came together in a meeting in March following a number of tragic incidents at the site.
It was agreed to install an additional sign on the path leading to the summit of the cliffs, to accompany existing signage at the peak.
The Samaritans are Cleveland Police’s chosen charity and the installation of the sign was supported by their contactors Tascor and local firm Warsett.
The multi-agency group are continuing to discuss other solutions, including the possible installation of a bench fitted with solar powered phones - with a direct line to the Samaritans helpline.
Representatives from involved agencies visited the site on Friday and chose today – World Suicide Prevention Day – to unveil the new sign to the public.
Director of Teesside Samaritans, Neil Craig, said: “We know that suicide is preventable and encouraging steps like this, and others taken in our area, will hopefully make a big difference in preventing future incidents.
“Teesside Samaritans are pleased to be working alongside these local groups and believe that more good work will be achieved by agencies working together as one.
“We feel the sign is ideally situated to highlight our helpline number if needed by a vulnerable person. The impact of the sign will be monitored and will indicate whether any additional actions need to be taken at a future date.”
Police and Crime Commissioner, Barry Coppinger, said: “Huntcliff is one of the most iconic landmarks in Cleveland and it’s a tragedy that such a beautiful spot is a place of heartbreak and sadness for families affected by suicide.
“Trying to reduce the number of people taking their own lives is not the responsibility of one agency. We must all work together to ensure the appropriate support is in place and if we can make one person seek help instead of taking drastic action, it will be worthwhile.”
Anyone in need of support can call the Samaritans on 116 123 (this number is free to call and will not appear on a bill), email on firstname.lastname@example.org or visit at 147 Borough Road, Middlesbrough, TS1 3AT.
Posted on Tuesday 10th September 2019