Safer Streets clampdown on nuisance car cruisers
Car cruisers have been warned they could be prosecuted if they attend gatherings at a retail park after the installation of a new CCTV camera.
The high-tech camera, capable to 360-degree viewing, has been put up at the entrance to the site, near the new Sainsburys, off Colwick Loop Road, following funding from the Safer Streets project.
It comes in response to a series of incidents where car enthusiasts have organised unlicensed gatherings which have caused road safety, noise and antisocial behaviour concerns from local residents and businesses.
The Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner for Nottinghamshire secured £3 million from the Home Office’s Safer Streets fund in the summer and has been working with partners across the county to implement a range of schemes to tackle neighbourhood crime, antisocial behaviour and violence against women and girls.
A share of this money has been specifically allocated for the Netherfield and Colwick area, with Nottinghamshire Police and Gedling Borough Council working alongside the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner to implement the schemes which aim to make public spaces safer for all.
Police and Crime Commissioner Caroline Henry said: “This funding has allowed us to come together as partner agencies and find a solution to a problem that has caused regular concern for local people in Netherfield and Colwick.
“Nottinghamshire Police and Gedling Borough Council have received numerous complaints about loud noise from rumbling engines and screeching tyres, as well as dangerous driving.
“The police and council respond well to these dynamic incidents to disperse them, but this new camera gives and extra tool that they can use to identify those responsible for this criminal or antisocial behaviour and take action.
“I hope it will also act as a deterrent that will allow local people to feel safer.”
Safer Streets has funded a number of other public safety measures in Netherfield and Colwick, including allowing Gedling Borough Council to hire Safer Streets wardens to patrol the retail park and residential areas.
A Shopwatch radio scheme is also being funded, allowing businesses on the Victoria Retail Park to quickly communicate with each other to alert each other, and the police, to the presence of prolific shoplifters or any other issues.
Five new automatic number plate recognition cameras have also been installed in the area which instantly alert police to vehicles linked to road traffic offences or intelligence on criminal activity – so they can respond quickly to take action.
In another move to tackle car cruisers near the retail park, Nottinghamshire Police and Gedling Borough Council are working together and consulting on plans to create a Public Spaces Protection Order, which prohibits car cruisers congregating in the area and gives police powers to issue fines.
Inspector Mark Stanley, Gedling’s Neighbourhood Policing Inspector, said: “We continue to work closely alongside our partners at Gedling Borough Council and the Office of Police and Crime Commissioner to do everything we can to address this issue and make sure the people in our communities feel safe and listened to.
“Nottinghamshire Police’s proactive work to tackle this issue was demonstrated over the weekend when, as part of an ongoing operation in the Colwick area, we seized an Audi S3, issued two Section 59 warnings and two traffic offence reports for antisocial driving.
“Other motorists were dispersed from the area and engaged with. Our weekend operation will also see vehicle owners being written to, warning them of the policing activity in this specific area, to act as a further deterrent.
“Officers will continue to patrol in known hotspot areas, engage with drivers and where necessary take enforcement action against those who break the law and cause antisocial behaviour.
"We encourage anyone with information about the use of illegal bikes to continue to report these matters to us by calling us on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.”
Leader of Gedling Borough Council, Councillor John Clarke MBE said: “I am very pleased that this CCTV camera will be installed and it should reduce the anti-social behaviour caused by recent unauthorised car cruising events.
“We have also taken swift steps to issue a public space prevention order that will effectively ban such events from taking place in the future.
“We are grateful for the funding from Safer Streets scheme at a time when budgets are being squeezed, and this will be great news for local residents and they should see a big reduction in the problems they have recently had to deal with.”