Reducing fear of crime at night is force's new target

PUBLISHED: 09:00 19 May 2014

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REDUCING the fear of crime at night in Weston's town centre has been highlighted as a police priority for the next three years.

Avon and Somerset Constabulary’s Police and Crime Commissioner Sue Mountstevens unveiled the North Somerset Police and Crime Plan this week.

The night-time economy, road safety and improved co-ordination of services have been identified as priorities for 2014-17.

Original commitments to tackling burglary, antisocial behaviour, domestic and sexual violence and putting victims first also remain.

New initiatives focusing on the night-time economy include a ‘traffic light’ system to make licensees more responsible for alcohol-related crime and disorder.

The report says: “We are working with partners in Weston to improve people’s trust and confidence in the police and to reduce the fear of crime, particularly in relation to visiting the town in the evening.

“We have been working to identify key areas of our service to victims which we could improve upon and improving our communication with those affected.

“Identifying hotspot areas, including those within the night-time economy, is really helping us focus our resources in the right way.”

The Bournville One project, aimed at tackling antisocial behaviour, is being rolled out on the estate later this year.

The constabulary is working alongside North Somerset Council on the high impact families programme, which works with particular families to reduce their levels of antisocial behaviour.

Police have also introduced 18 no cold calling zones across North Somerset.

Night-time operations have been carried out using cross-country bikes and off-road cars to target criminals in rural communities.

Speeding has been highlighted as a major concern in the Sedgemoor Police and Crime Plan, and community speed watch programmes are being set up in Cheddar and West Huntspill to help tackle it.

The police team in Burnham have also joined forces with the Senior Citizen Liaison Team to offer more support to the older generation.

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