Community rallies after spate of crime in Ellenbrook Green, Ipswich

Penalty 2 convenience store on Ellenbrook Green was ram raided last month.

Penalty 2 convenience store on Ellenbrook Green was ram raided last month. - Credit: Su Anderson

A community has pulled together to find a solution after a wave of crime in south west Ipswich.

A public meeting was held last night at the Belstead Arms pub between police chiefs, council members, business owners and concerned residents.

Since April, 15 offences including six burglaries have taken place in Ellenbrook Green, including the robbery of the BP garage and culminating in a ram-raid at Penalty 2 convenience store on July 23 – the fifth time it was targeted in two months.

An offer was made by the East of England Co-op, which has a store in Ellenbrook Green, to install up to six new state-of-the-art security cameras in the area which are monitored 24-hours a day.

The meeting was organised by Ipswich borough councillor for the Sprites ward, Bob Hall, and attended by Suffolk police and crime commissioner Tim Passmore, chief inspector Sarsfield Donohue and south west area inspector Kevin Horton.

Opening the meeting, Mr Passmore said: “We need to make sure that you are reassured and I know there are concerns, and we can listen and act on them.

“This is how we can improve things and make things better, by hearing it directly from you.”

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Mr Donohue said officers had been working proactively to track down the offenders and prevent further crime, including liaising with colleagues in Hadleigh where police had suspects.

Seven people have since been arrested in relation to the six burglaries, Mr Donohoue said.

He added the other crimes committed in the area in the past four months were low level public orders, minor thefts, making off without payment and a bin fire.

Concerns were raised by residents about the security facilities in Ellenbrook Green, with Sprites councillor Roger Fern placing a question mark over whether the single camera in the shopping area was sufficient.

Executive officer of retail at the East of England Co-op Roger Grosvenor said: “We are obviously part of the fabric of this area and we actually have state-of-the-art kit at our disposal.

“We’ve got a 24 hour surveillance arc and we would be willing to fund the cameras in this area over a period of time and they are watched via our security team.

“We’d be happy to offer that level of cover to protect this area and feed the police with that information, and it is live so we can come straight to you and tell you exactly what is going on”

Mr Donohue said he would be happy to consider working with Mr Grosvenor in partnership with Ipswich Borough Council.

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