Victims of vehicle crime in areas of Mansfield are set to benefit from free state-of-the-art security devices as part of an effort to increase safety across the town.
Up to £10,000 of funding has been earmarked for vehicle security products for previous victims of car crime living in specific areas of the town centre to reduce their future vulnerability.
Nottinghamshire Police and Crime Commissioner Caroline Henry secured £432k from the Home Office’s Safer Streets scheme to step up efforts to tackle street crime and burglary in the Portland and Woodlands wards of town in 2021-22. These areas have been identified as having a disproportionately higher risk of crime and therefore have qualified for the Home Office initiative.
The scheme is funding a raft of improvements including home security upgrades at hundreds of homes, new fixed and re-deployable 4G CCTV cameras, improved street lighting, additional Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) technology to help police detect crime and extra monitoring hours to keep residents safe. It is also supporting extra high-visibility police patrols around the top ten hotpots for burglary.
Eligible residents who have previously had tools, equipment or vehicles stolen are now being offered vehicle security devices to help protect their livelihoods and property and reduce their risk of crime.
Among those to benefit is Mansfield resident Alan whose home storage unit has been broken into three times. The building firm owner has also had his van broken into three times, with several thousand pounds worth of tools stolen, as well as an attempted burglary on his home.
The 62-year-old has now benefitted from free CCTV as part of the scheme, a new Ring doorbell, an alarm for his storage unit and is set to receive a new van vault to safely secure his tools overnight.
He said: “We’ve been very pleased with the scheme and we feel a lot safer. The first question the police ask after a theft or burglary is do you have CCTV? The new camera therefore should be a deterrent but if it does happen again, I feel like we are much more likely of catching the people who’ve done it.
“We have an old house with thick walls so the contractors had to get an extra piece of technology to enable the cameras and doorbell to connect to the internet but they did it and it was no problem to them, it was all part of the package.
“We’ve also been given a safety marking pen for my power tools which will help identify them if they’re stolen and also acts as a deterrent as you have to damage the tools to remove the marking, making them unsaleable.
“PCSO Megan Tuffley, the local Burglary Reduction Officer in Mansfield, was very helpful and has done everything she can to help us – it’s a great scheme.”
Nottinghamshire Police and Crime Commissioner Caroline Henry said: “I have spoken to people who have had their cars and tools stolen so I know what an impact vehicle theft can have.
“We must do more to protect our hardworking residents from these losses. Through the ongoing Safer Streets partnership, we will invest in practical resources to keep our communities safe and ensure those who have had the misfortune of falling victim before have the support they deserve to feel safe again.”
The new security devices include:
- Free tracking devices – fully fitted with one year free subscription. This will allow drivers to monitor their vehicle location from the palm of their hand with a smartphone app.
- Van vaults to safely and securely store tools and valuable kit overnight. Kit is stored behind a heavy duty steel body with reinforced lid and advanced protection locking system.
- Vehicle immobilisers which prevent vehicles from being driven away without the correct key or code (ideal for keyless entry vehicles by adding another layer of security, preventing signal boosting thefts being successful).
- Deadlocks or Slamlocks for vans. These additional locking systems provide extra overnight protection or security in vulnerable locations. The T-Series deadlock adds a key-operated locking system which operates separately from the existing central locking system and is approved by the Thatcham automotive research centre.
Councillor Marion Bradshaw, Mansfield District Council’s Portfolio Holder for Safer Communities, Housing and Wellbeing, said:
“We welcome support from the Safer Streets project in Mansfield to help people live safer and happier lives. I encourage residents in the Portland and Woodlands Wards to take up the offer from Mansfield Police when they receive a letter through their door. These crime reduction measures really can help to make a difference in our community and give confidence to people living here.”
Councillor John Cottee, Chairman of Nottinghamshire County Council’s Communities Committee, said: “Our partnership work is continuing to go from strength to strength and this is yet another example of our commitment to helping residents in Mansfield feel safer in the communities where they live and work.
“I very much welcome the latest initiative as part of the Safer Streets project and I would urge any eligible resident to make sure they take up the offer of a free security device.
“Hopefully this will help vehicle owners who have been targeted by thieves feel safer and ultimately reduce this type of crime.”
Inspector Nick Butler, district commander for Mansfield, said:
“This is yet another example of how we are using Safer Streets funding to design out crime. We know that many criminals are simply opportunists who want things to be as easy as possible for them.
“This initiative and others like it is all about putting in place some relatively simple, inexpensive measures that serve to make things as difficult as possible for criminals.”
Eligible residents have received a letter by their local Burglary Reduction Officer PCSO Megan Tuffley informing them of how to access the scheme.