Success for safer neighbourhood teams

VIDEO Successful safer neighbourhood policing teams have helped to cut crime in parts of Ipswich by up to 50 per cent, a top officer said today.

SUCCESSFUL safer neighbourhood policing teams have helped to cut crime in parts of Ipswich by up to 50 per cent, a top officer said today.

Chief Inspector Bruce Robinson spoke as Suffolk Police celebrated the first birthday of the teams with a party on the Cornhill in Ipswich.

Total crime in Kesgrave is down 50 per cent, vehicle crime in south-east Ipswich is also down 50 pc and there have been 1,800 fewer crimes in East Suffolk, over the last year.

Ch Insp Robinson said the safer neighbourhood teams had allowed police to meet the priorities of residents in particular areas.

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“We have priorities from the Home Office and need to meet these but working with safer neighbourhood teams we can find out what concerns people have.

“People had been reluctant to approach us but we are part of a broader family and they are willing to engage with us and talk to us.”

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Ch Insp Robinson said police had been helped in their community efforts by working with branches of Neighbourhood Watch as well as Ipswich Borough Council.

Inspector Steve Gallant, who works in Felixstowe, said: “Safer neighbourhood teams are working well in Suffolk Coastal.

“We always want to get out there and engage with people. Our everyday work is now done with the community instead of with the Home Office and the government.”

Since safer neighbourhood teams were launched they have run a crime and reduction awareness day on the Cornhill, marked small items such as mobile phones and I-pods for free, opened bases near Tesco in Ropes Drive, Kesgrave and on the Ministry of Defence site at Woodbridge.

Last Christmas they did a present drop at the children's ward of Ipswich Hospital and the East Anglian Children's Hospice.

Have you been helped by a safer neighbourhood team? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or e-mail

Safer neighbourhood teams hold regular community engagement events to speak to the public and find out what issues are affecting them.

Current priorities include:

Tackling traffic issues such as parking and speeding.

Reducing criminal damage, youth nuisance and anti-social behaviour.

Rejuvenating parts of towns and villages.

Engaging with and reassuring communities.

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