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Gates prevent drugs, urinating and graffiti in Nottinghamshire ASB hotspot

Anti-social behaviour in Newark’s St Marks Place continues to be stopped in its tracks as part of the Safer Streets project.

Pedestrian gating, the final security measure to combat crime and anti-social behaviour in the area, has been installed.

Drugs, urinating and graffiti

This, alongside vehicle access gating installed in January 2023, has been installed to prevent public access to the site which had previously been subject to drug use, urinating, and graffiti, leaving residents and workers in the area feeling unsafe.

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Within weeks, the gating had already proved to be a successful investment as Police were able to apprehend an offender who tried to use the site as a shortcut when running from officers.

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‘An improvement’ say businesses

Businesses in the surrounding area commented that ASB around the site has decreased and they have found the gating to be “an improvement” with “less kids hanging around, less mess and we feel safer using the area”.

Safer Streets funding

The St Marks Place gating project is one of a number of plans that have been funded in Newark as part of the Safer Streets project to prevent anti-social behaviour and make residents feel safer.

Other plans that have already been put in place include new door entry systems at Tithe Barn and Queen’s Court, Newark, improved street lighting, and investments in raising awareness and educating residents and local businesses about violence against women and girls.

The Home Office’s Safer Streets fund is aimed at projects to tackle neighbourhood crime and anti-social behaviour and prevent violence against women and girls.

£3m secured by Nottinghamshire PCC

The funding for Newark comes as part of a £3m windfall secured by the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner (OPCC) for Nottinghamshire for projects across the county, and this is the third time Newark has benefitted from Safer Streets funding. Over £1 million has been invested towards a safer Newark and Sherwood from the scheme to date.

Councillor comment

Councillor Paul Taylor, Portfolio Holder for Cleaner, Safer, Greener at Newark and Sherwood District Council, said: “The Safer Streets project is a great example of the good initiatives we can deliver for our residents when we work with our partners in the district.

“Our focus throughout the Safer Streets project is to increase our residents’ feeling of safety when out in the community, and measures such as the new security gates are installed to stop those who would threaten that in their tracks.”

PCC comment

Nottinghamshire Police and Crime Commissioner Caroline Henry said: “Well over £1 million has been invested into the Newark area over the past 12 months on projects that make a difference to people’s lives.

“The impact of antisocial behaviour can be incredibly damaging to residents and workers in any area, and St Mark’s Place was somewhere identified as a place which needed significant attention.

“The Safer Streets funding is there to make people safer and importantly to feel safer, so it is great to see the new gating having the desired effect.”

Police comment

Inspector Charlotte Ellam, District Commander for Newark and Sherwood said: “Tackling antisocial behaviour remains one of our top priorities, and projects like Safer Streets are helping put initiatives in place to stop those people blighting our communities.

“We are listening to the people of our communities and the concerns they have and by working with our partners to install measures like these security gates we are joining forces to make sure our residents feel listened to and safer.”

A spokesperson for Berkley Estates Limited said: “It is great to see the gating installed, and we are pleased to be able to work with Newark and Sherwood District Council and its Safer Street partners to enhance the security and safety of the community in the area.”

What is Safer Streets funding?

The Safer Streets Fund is an initiative by the UK government aimed at improving the safety of public spaces, particularly for women and girls. The third round of the fund allows Police and Crime Commissioners, local authorities in England and Wales, and the British Transport Police to bid for investment into both innovative and traditional interventions to enhance public safety.

The main objectives of the fund are:

  1. To reduce violence against women and girls (VAWG) and increase their feelings of safety in public spaces.
  2. To build the evidence base for what works on reducing VAWG crimes and increasing feelings of safety in the public domain.
  3. To improve both the national and local data picture regarding VAWG crimes in public spaces, which could include increased reporting for some crime types.
  4. To make public spaces safer for all.

The guidance for bidders covers area eligibility, consultation requirements, eligible activity, evaluation, funding timeline, application process, and indicative evidence and case studies. The bidding period for the third round of funding is now closed, and details of the next funding round have been published.

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