BRIDWATCH has been labelled “crucial” in the fight against crime in the town by the Humberside Police and Crime Commissioner, Matthew Grove.
At a meeting of Bridwatch on Tuesday February 19 Mr Grove answered questions on crime prevention in Bridlington from the group and spoke about the challenges faced by him in his role.
He said: “Organisations like yourselves are absolutely crucial to driving down crime. It is going to get harder and harder to drive down crime but we can do it and we will do it. You are the eyes and ears.
“You are already doing much of what I want other areas to do and this is, I think, a success story for the area.
“I want to tell communities – do what you think should be done. I want to treat communities as proper adults.
“It is about giving them the power, if you like, to make the wrong decision.”
Mr Grove said he had been impressed by the work of the Cop Shop in Prospect Street, Bridlington, but needed proof of the effects the work has had in the town in order to continue to provide them with funding after it stops in less than two-years time.
When questioned over Bridlington’s place in his Police and Crime Plan he said: “My job is not to tackle what the operational priorities are when it comes to policing.
“My police and crime plan states there are high level targets about cutting crime and reducing re-offending.
“What I do not want to do is to set lots and lots of targets for the police service. What I am trying to do is to make sure the police service isn’t one size fits all.”
Mike Bowman, chairman of Bridwatch, said: “We are always looking for new watches.
“We have come from a hard place and we now have a light at the end of the tunnel.
“My ambition is to get 50 neighbourhood watches by the end of the year.
“There is no cost whatsoever to be a member and there are no running costs. Hopefully it will cut crime and if you have got a neighbourhood watch it will definitely cut antisocial behaviour.”
The meeting, held at Bridlington Central Library, was also attended by Beverley Feirn of Humberside Police and the Community and Neighbourhood Watch Support Officer, Julie Llewellyn, of East Riding of Yorkshire Council.
Bridwatch began in July last year and has already helped create 30 neighbourhood watches in Bridlington helping to cut back on crime in the town.