Security guards look set to stay
PRIVATE security guards looks set to be kept on in a village blighted by young vandals after it was revealed crime rates have fallen dramatically.Since the guards started patrolling the streets of Glemsford, near Sudbury, the most types of crime had been cut with only car crime slightly on the up.
PRIVATE security guards looks set to be kept on in a village blighted by young vandals after it was revealed crime rates have fallen dramatically.
Since the guards started patrolling the streets of Glemsford, near Sudbury, the most types of crime had been cut with only car crime slightly on the up.
As previously reported by the EADT, Glemsford Parish Council recently became the first in Suffolk to us taxpayers money to hire the guards to patrol the village streets.
The drastic action was taken to try and stamp out the vandalism and rowdy behaviour plaguing the village. On some occasions angry community leaders were reporting vandal attacks at the village hall and sports pavilion on an almost daily basis.
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Others wanted to introduce the guards to make up the low police presence in the village, which has recently been increased from one officer to two.
The guards were initially hired for a three-month trial period, which was extended for an extra three months.
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This weeks parish councillors voted to keep the guards until at least November and probably longer after hearing of their success.
Parish clerk Sara Turner said: "It is difficult to give exact figures because we have recently been given an extra police officer, but what we can say is that every crime except car crime has fallen in the village since the guards arrived.
"Vandalism is definitely down and I don't receive anywhere near the level of complaints that I used to before they came.
"The councillor voted to keep them until at least November when we have our precept meeting, and it is looking likely they will be kept longer.
"We think the guards have been a success and have helped to reduce some of the problems we were suffering before."
Statistics show that between August 1 and September 5 this year burglaries dropped from three to zero, criminal damage halved and violent offences fell from nine to four, compared to the same time period last year. Vehicle crime rose from two to six.
Meanwhile, Long Melford Parish Council has decided not to follow in Glemsford's footsteps to stamp out similar problems. Councillors in Melford were considering employing private security guards, but have decided to drop the idea after police introduced another beat officer to help patrol the village.