Disappointment over town's CCTV system

FELIXSTOWE is to definitely get CCTV - but it won't be the scheme expected.Agreement has been reached for the £36,000 system and a contractor approved, but the crime-busting closed-circuit television cameras will not be mobile as was put forward and accepted in the government grant bid.

FELIXSTOWE is to definitely get CCTV - but it won't be the scheme expected.

Agreement has been reached for the £36,000 system and a contractor approved, but the crime-busting closed-circuit television cameras will not be mobile as was put forward and accepted in the government grant bid.

Instead, the four cameras will be fixed to lamp-posts in the town centre.

Councillor Mike Ninnmey voiced disappointment over the scheme, which it had been hoped could be used to tackle problems with criminal damage and anti-social behaviour in the west, south and north of the town.

There have been 450 incidents in these areas every year.

“When we first looked at a scheme, one of the benefits was that cameras could be moved around and used in these areas where we have problems,” he said.

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“The system now lacks a single camera which is mobile.

“It will offer a good deterrent to retail crime but will do nothing to help residents in other parts of the town.”

Doreen Savage, chairman of the CCTV task group, said: “We have a limited amount of funding and this system is all we can afford and it is better to have four static cameras than nothing at all.”

She said the cameras could be moved around the town centre as long as their signals linked but they could not be taken further afield.

The group agreed to ask the police whether officers would be able to pay more attention to other areas of the town once the CCTV is in place and covering the town centre.

STC Solutions has been awarded the contract for the CCTV system and negotiations are taking place over cost and future repair and maintenance.

The system can be extended to host up to ten cameras if future funding is found. The receiver equipment is to be placed on the cinema roof and three old and corroded lamp-posts will need to be replaced to take some of the cameras. Pictures from the system will be good enough for court evidence.

What do you think of having CCTV in Felixstowe? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail EveningStarLetters@eveningstar.co.uk

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