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New bid for CCTV

PUBLISHED: 13:00 26 May 2002 | UPDATED: 12:00 03 March 2010

A CAMPAIGN to install closed circuit television cameras in the centre of an historic market town has been re-ignited after a recent arson attack severely damaged a shop.

A CAMPAIGN to install closed circuit television cameras in the centre of an historic market town has been re-ignited after a recent arson attack severely damaged a shop.

Traders in Woodbridge are furious that petitions by shopkeepers and residents for cameras were ignored before Finch's grocery shop in the Turban Centre was burnt. Firemen prevented a major disaster when they stopped the blaze spreading through neighbouring shops and flats, but the shop remains closed and waiting to be repaired.

Traders said they will relaunch the petitions and ask the district council and the police to find the money to buy cameras.

Louis Dawson, a petition organiser from Barretts, said: ''More than 300 people signed the residents' petition and more than 80 signed the shopkeepers' one. These were organised because we warned that something could happen – and then of course it did.''

Tens of thousands of pounds have been spent on new street lights in Woodbridge and Pat O'Hagan, of United News, said the money could have been better invested in cameras.

''I just want to be safe in my own home. We were so enraged about the fire but if cameras had been brought in they would either have spotted the people responsible or they would have deterred them in the first place.

''People say the cameras cost too much but there was the cost of having eight fire engines and police at that fire. Those people who do not want cameras live outside the town centre and they do not know what goes on here,'' said Mrs O'Hagan.

A district council bid for Home Office funding was rejected last year after the Government received too many applications nationally. It would cost £228,600 for 12 cameras in Woodbridge with an annual running cost of £50,200.

The district council will be asked for support at the next meeting of Woodbridge Shop Watch.


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