New surveillance cameras are on their way to a Harborough district park thanks to a multiagency project.
Site surveys of Welland Park in Market Harborough have been completed by Harborough District Council officers and new CCTV cameras and equipment are on order, ready for installation in the coming weeks.
The project is being joint-funded by Harborough District Council and the Home Office’s Safer Streets 3 project, which is aimed at reducing violence against women and girls.
Working in conjunction with local authority partners and Leicestershire Police, Leicestershire Police and Crime Commissioner Rupert Matthews secured £550k from the third round of the Home Office’s Safer Streets Fund to make women and girls safer in parks and open spaces across the force area.
CCTV cameras were earmarked for Welland Park as an expansion to the existing town’s CCTV scheme following consultation with local Police and Community Safety Partnership to help with the prevention of anti-social behaviour and crime and to increase feelings of safety for park users. The addition of Safer Streets funding is enabling a total of six cameras to be installed this financial year.
In total, Safer Streets funding will be invested in 31 new CCTV cameras and improved street lighting in parks across the Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland area to deter crime, reduce the risk of women and girls being assaulted and increase the chance of offenders being caught by police.
The project will also help fund safety cameras in Warwick Park in Kibworth as part of a wider safety initiative funded by Kibworth Parish Council.
This week, Commissioner Matthews met Cllr Simon Whelband, Cabinet Member for Communities, Wellbeing & Housing at Welland Park to visit the site where new cameras will be installed.
Mr Matthews said: “These new cameras will be a welcome addition to Harborough, not only reducing the opportunity for criminals to strike but reducing the fear of crime for all park users, especially women using the park on their own.
“We have listened carefully to women to understand where they feel most vulnerable and at risk and are investing in the resources that will make a meaningful difference to their safety and confidence.
“Simple measures such as CCTV can do a lot to prevent and deter crime. They can also increase the investigative capabilities of the police and provide crucial evidence when an offence occurs. I am grateful for the positive partnership with the council to ensure local people benefit from the scheme as soon as possible.”
Cllr Simon Whelband, Harborough District Council’s Cabinet lead on community safety, said: “The installation of CCTV in Welland Park in Market Harborough will help to create a safe space for everyone to enjoy. Nobody should feel unsafe in areas such as public parks and I am pleased we have been able to work with the Police and Crime Commissioner to bring state-of-the art CCTV to this popular park.”
The Safer Streets 3 improvements cover 18 parks across the LLR area and comprise; Victoria Park, Braunstone Park, Abbey Park, Western Park, Bede Park, Aylestone Meadows, Rally Park, Knighton Park in Leicester, Bradgate Park and Queens Park in Charnwood, Warwick Park Kibworth Harcourt and Welland Park in Harborough, Clarendon Park in Hinckley and Bosworth, Melton Country Park in Melton, Brock Hill Country Park and Blaby Road Park in Oadby and Wigston, Cutts Close Park and Tod’s Piece Park in Rutland.
The project will also fund improvement works to increase visibility and reduce seclusion in parks through the cutting back of undergrowth and foliage and the launch of a new safety campaign to tackle underlying attitudes and inequalities that help to foster gender-based violence.
Nationally, police and crime commissioners and local authorities received a total of £23.5million of Safer Streets funding on top of the £18.4m already awarded this year in the second round of the fund.
Media Enquiries: Sallie Blair - 01283 821012 / 07702 541401
Posted on Friday 7th January 2022