Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland Police and Crime Commissioner Rupert Matthews has hailed the success of a safety project that has helped protect 266 Hinckley homes from the risk of burglary and theft.
Since the launch of the Safer Streets 2 project last summer, security experts have visited hundreds of residents in the town to carry out free risk assessments as part of a plan to increase safety and prevent crime.
In total, Hinckley residents received 2,500 free security products over the 10-month project ranging from new locks, window alert alarms, light timers and door bar/chains while 155 received bicycle/vehicle packages to protect them from theft. In addition, all residents received a Personal Attack Alarm and a Property Marking Kit.
Mr Matthews said: “The Safer Streets scheme has been a phenomenal success and it is rewarding for all involved to hear about the positive impact these improvements have had on confidence, peace of mind and feelings of safety.
“Our partners 24-7 Locks Ltd and Hinckley and Bosworth Borough Council have worked relentlessly to ensure our communities receive the full benefit of this funding, with 24-7 Locks Ltd in particular delivering a huge programme of works within a challenging time-frame.
“Preventing crime was always a key aim of the scheme but we also set out to help free people of the fear of crime so they no longer felt apprehensive about leaving their homes. It is clear from the feedback we’ve received that these security products have improved confidence and safety considerably.
“There is always more to do of course, and I will build on this progress with our partners in the near future, exploring every available funding opportunity to bring further improvements to our communities and reduce the risk of street crime.”
Hinckley and Bosworth Borough Council’s Executive Member for Community Safety, Councillor Michael Mullaney, said: “It's great that so many people in the Hinckley area were able to take up the offer of these free security devices. I spoke to many people who took up this offer and were very pleased with the results.
"Thanks to 24/7 locks who provided a first-class service. Keeping safe and secure is a key issue for many people in the Hinckley area and I'm glad this scheme was available to make people and their properties more secure.
"At a time when finances are a struggle for many people it's good that many people in Hinckley have been able to benefit from these free devices."
The Safer Streets 2 project has been funded by a £432k grant secured by Mr Matthews following a successful bid to the Home Office’s Safer Streets Fund.
This was topped up by a further £50k grant from the Home Office in January to expand the security scheme, some of which was used to fund vehicle and bicycle security packages in Hinckley.
Together, it has funded security upgrades to more than 1,000 homes across the areas of Castle Donington, Hinckley, Lutterworth and Melton Mowbray – areas impacted by disproportionate levels of serious acquisitive crimes such burglary, robbery and theft.
Alongside free home improvements, the scheme has funded new police automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) cameras and additional CCTV as well as enhanced streetlighting in some areas. It has also funded additional radios in Hinckley for the radio link scheme managed by the Business Improvement District (BID) which links businesses with the Police and CCTV to ensure timely responses to incidents.
Hinckley resident John, 57, who benefitted from the scheme, said: “It’s a fantastic scheme and I’m all for it as an ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure.
“I have previously been a victim of car crime. I must’ve left my car open at the time and they stole my sat nav. It was one of those things, lock your car or else face the consequences.
“The first I heard of the scheme was when leaflets were pushed through the door. I thought this was some kind of fraud or scam, I’m not even going to entertain it but my neighbour said a local councillor had knocked on his door and validated the scheme – otherwise I wouldn’t have paid any attention.
“They changed the locks for me and were very professional. He told me why my locks were not very good and explained the benefits of the new ones they were putting in. He also gave me light timers and a device which makes it look like the TV is on
“I feel much safer, the new locks have given me peace of mind.”
Of the core security products, 24-7 Locks Ltd distributed 382 three-star Diamond-Rated, Anti-Snap Cylinders to secure the main points of access to properties, 337 light timers, 128 door bar/chains and 598 window alarms.
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Posted on Thursday 5th May 2022