Speeding and drug-dealing targeted in week of action by police, army and Colchester council
- Credit: Archant
Fears over littering, speeding and drug dealing prompted soldiers, councillors and police to join forces in an anti-social behaviour crackdown.
Essex Police, Colchester councillors and Royal Military Police took to the streets of Colchester and asked more than 500 households in the Shrub End area of Colchester what were their biggest concerns.
The coalition, which is called the Safer Colchester Partnership, found that problems from littering to drug dealing were on the minds of concerned residents.
The result of the surveys was Street Week, which took place between October 15 and 19 and saw spot speed checks, litter picks and checks that convenience stores were abiding by their licences carried out.
District commander Chief Inspector Shaun Kane said: “Street Week is all about listening to people and getting the right organisations involved to fix problems.
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“While we were out speaking to people, we identified some who felt isolated and were able to tell them about organisations that could help and facilitate the necessary support.”
Mike Lilley, portfolio holder for planning, public safety and licensing at Colchester Borough Council, said that the activity was not just aimed at clearing up the streets, but including the opinions of all the residents in the area.
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Shrub End has a large population of families with military personnel, and integrating military and non-military residents is an importantly part of the scheme.
He said: “We wanted to show the army families that they are an important part of Colchester.
“The garrison has been here forever and the families live side by side with other residents, so it make sense to hear from everyone to try and improve our town.”
The North Essex Parking Partnership, Neighbourhood Watch and Active Citizens also took part in Street Week.
A coffee morning was also held so those living in the area could meet one another and neighbourhood police officers - with more than 30 residents signing up to join the Neighbourhood Watch scheme.
Colchester Garrison Sergeant Major Billy Biggar said: “We’ve made progress, but it’s a starting point and all of the partners are committed to building on what we’ve done to help make the neighbourhood a better and safer place.”