Clacton: Patrol scheme tackles anti-social behaviour

PC Gary Coe and Tendring's Parking and Community Supervisor Mick Simson.

PC Gary Coe and Tendring's Parking and Community Supervisor Mick Simson. - Credit: Archant

A pilot scheme introduced to tackle anti-social behaviour in Clacton town centre has been hailed a success.

According to councillors, the initiative to operate joint patrols between Tendring District Council and Essex Police has proved both effective and popular.

It involves police officers and Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs) taking to the streets alongside the council’s parking and seafront rangers once a week. All of the rangers are accredited under the Police Community Accreditation Scheme.

The patrols have taken place since the end of May and are already achieving significant results for both the council and the police.

Nick Turner, Tendring Council’s cabinet member for Environment and Coast Protection, said the aim of the exercise is to reduce incidents of street drinking and anti-social behaviour in Clacton,” he said.

He said: “The feedback we are getting is that is has already proved popular with the public and local businesses.

“The council is particularly pleased with the impact the regular patrols have had on these types of incidents in our seafront areas and in car parks.

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“It has also allowed frontline police officers to deal with a wider range of anti-social behaviour issues and deal with them more effectively.”

The joint patrols have already resulted in Clacton’s main town centre car park in High Street receiving a prestigious Safer Parking Award for the first time. The award, which is due to be confirmed shortly, has never previously been possible on this site, the busiest in the council’s operation across the district. This has been due to a combination of inconsistent boundary security and concerns about potential car crime.

Neighbourhood policing Sgt Paul Gale said: “This partnership approach to enhancing the local community is really working well and has enabled us all to tackle a whole array of matters which have been causing consternation to local residents and retailers.

“We have all enjoyed working with our counterparts from the council and look forward to this fruitful relationship developing.”

The patrols will continue throughout the summer and will be evaluated in the autumn.