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GWW - Public Meeting With Police


Chris Chappell
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I have arranged a public meeting, mainly for the residents of Hunderton but for anyone who is worried about using the Great Western Way at the moment, with the police, at the Kindle Centre on Thursday at 7pm.

Officers investigating the recent murder, and related matters will be attending, along with the local police commander, Supt Sue Thomas and the local south wye police team. The police will give as much information as they can about this investigation, and will answer questions from the public.

This is another opportunity for anyone who thinks they may have any information, however slight,to give to the police and also an opportunity to discuss latest plans for CCTV on the Great Western Way.

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I have been having conversations with the police about CCTV and I am reasonably confident that some coverage can happen fairly quickly. I hope an announcement about this will be made Thursday evening.

 

The important thing to remember is CCTV does not necessarily stop a crime being committed. City centre and market towns centres are covered by CCTV and most of the violent outdoor crime happens here.. What it does do is alert police to a crime happening and helps to secure a conviction.

 

There has been a great deal of police activity going on concerning the murder but they have not made their activities public for obvious reasons. My discussions over the last few weeks, lead me to believe that all is being done that can be done to bring the offender to justice. I do think that some of the criticism of the police in recent weeks has been unnecessary.

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Chris I have been campaigning on here for additional lighting and CCTV since 2010 see this topic. Glenda Powell also managed to get tree's and bushes cleared and also requested CCTV. I thought she had secured at least one CCTV camera which is to be installed in September? It would be nice to have more than just one camera.

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Yes Colin, like yourself I had been campaigning since 2010 also for CCTV, my efforts came to fruition last November when the money I asked the Police Commissioner for 18 months ago for a  CCTV camera was awarded ( see my post 7 on the GWW assult post) also my campaign was acknowledged today when Free Radio asked me for an interview  this morning,they had known of my campaign, and I was able to confirm the camera will be installed on the Hunderton Bridge in September.

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The important thing to remember is CCTV does not necessarily stop a crime being committed. 

 

Correct

 

There has been a great deal of police activity going on concerning the murder but they have not made their activities public for obvious reasons.

 

I think most activity is/was probably checking data behind a computer screen. I will say tho that there has also been an absence of reassurance messages issued that usually go along the lines of 'Hereford is generally safe' .... Plus nothing is getting pumped out into the Public Domain that suggests that any influence is walking those Lines at night. Covert or otherwise. I think the Public engagement over this here has been p*** poor.

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It will be interesting to see what the police have to say on Thursday but thanks for arranging this meeting Chris in the first instance, something maybe the police should of done weeks ago. I appreciate that they are doing all that they can but sometimes announcements help to reassure local people, in this day and age with social media its a lot easier to communicate with the public. I hope we have some up to date news on the cctv situation and to see if there will be extra police patrols at night along the lines and in and around Hunderton.

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I hope the HT will have a reporter in the room for timely information on this important meeting. They have a live blog running, as we speak, for HFC v Coleshill Town for a 9th tier football match so no reason why something similar can't be arranged for this. Or at least a news item posted on the night.

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I will be going, this is an important meeting many local people have concerns so will go hopefully it will be a good turnout.

 

There is obviously interest in this as the HT got a bit lively yesterday with their news item on the meeting. The main worry I have is that when the impetus dies down on any given new incident/assault then the local areas will probably then be left to fall back on the 'Neighbourhood' Police Team. If you look on the WMP Website the team Members are listed. When you sift out the CSO's and supervisors out then Hunderton has one PC listed.

 

If you are going to the Meeting I would suggest that you ask how long are the WMP are prepared to throw additional boots on the ground on the GWW, at late hours, to reassure people. Maybe even ask if they are doing it at the moment? 

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How many CCTVs and how much more lighting? The GWW do not start at Hunderton and end at Sainsburys, it goes past Redhill one way and goes up towards the Courtyard the other way. this is the way I walk when I go to and from work and also to visit my Dad. 

The LED lighting is not that good, it produces dark shadows, get some decent lighting on there and let stop putting these awful lights around the streets of Hereford.

 

I have other plans for Thursday, so I can't go.

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Adrian Symonds, I totally agree with your post above, I asked for 3  CCTV cameras in my campaign over the last 5 years one at Barton Road entrance to the GWW, one on Hunderton Bridge and the last up by the Skate Park in Newton Farm. (I only got the money for one by asking the police commissioner Mr Longmore for the money)The reason I only asked for these areas because they covered the areas I was the ward councillor for. It was up to the councillors who represented White Cross and Hereford City to ask for them in their areas.

 

In regards to the Led lights personally I don't like them they only shine directly down in the area they are situated in between it is dark, unfortunately those are the lights the council favour and are installing all over Hereford. In regards to the trees/bushes as I said previously I asked Amey the council contractor at the time to cut these back which they did it took them 3 weeks to complete and it made a great deal of difference, they did a fantastic job for me right up to when they lost the contract, unfortunately the work they completed has not been repeated since, the contractors now just cut the grass . In my opinion it should be monitored every month to see what work needs to be done and do it !

 

I told all this to Free Radio and HT when they interviewed me this week, because they had acknowledged my campaigning for CCTV for GWW over the last five years.

 

I will be attending the meeting tonight and given the opportunity asking both the council "why has the camera not been installed, and the police why they did not call a meeting a month ago to reassure the residents of Hunderton".

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I discussed having a public meeting a couple of weeks after the murder with the police and small group of councillors for the area. We decided that there was not a lot to say then and that we would keep the situation under review. When I heard of the most recent incident I decided now was the time and spoke to Supt Thomas. She agreed now was the right time.

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The LED lights are more cost effective and give off less light pollution, they are not less bright but there is no pollution being wasted from above, the solution to this problem is to install more! Another idea would be to cut back more of these tress and overgrown buses as this is where potential crimes could hide.

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I thought I would post this as a record.

 

From Hereford Times News 27th August 2015

 


 

SUMMARY

Senior police and representatives from Herefordshire Council are attending a community meeting at the Kindle Centre tonight from 7pm.

 

The meeting aims to address concerns raised by the local community after Hereford father Christian Bagley was murdered on the Great Western Way in June.

 

Several other serious assaults have happened since, including an attack in the early hours of Sunday morning which left a 29-year-old man needing hospital treatment.

 

Most Recent

8:23pm

Thanks for following the blog tonight. We'll have a full report online tomorrow.

 

8:23pm

The meeting has now come to an end. Some residents are taking the opportunity to speak to councillors and police.

 

8:20pm

Resources cannot be taken from other parts of the county, says Superintendent Thomas.

"It is not an unsafe area," she adds, but calls for residents to communicate with police and report incidents.

The attack which happened last weekend is not being linked to the murder of Christian Bagley.

 

8:18pm

A man who moved to the area a year ago said his family feels very unsafe. They have never experienced anything like this before, he says and asks for policing resources to be assessed.

 

8:14pm

One resident says communication has been poor.

People are frightened, she said.

 

8:10pm

One resident, from Springfield Avenue, said two years ago there were PCSOs along the lines and in the area day and night. That is no longer the case.

"Would it not make sense to work with the council to open the lines for vehicles, so police can drive up and down the lines?" he asks.

 

8:07pm

Some residents have walked out of the meeting.

 

8:07pm

We'll find out who's responsible for trimming the trees back, says Cllr Powell, and will try to get it sorted.

 

8:05pm

The GWW has not been cleared for some time, she says.

 

8:05pm

Former councillor, Glenda Powell, says she has been campaigning for CCTV cameras for five years.

She asks why the camera hasn't been installed, despite funding having been allocated last year.

 

8:00pm

This is the first and most appropriate time, said Cllr Chappell.

 

7:59pm

One member of the public said they have noticed more police in the area recently.

Another has asked why it has taken so long for a public meeting to be held.

 

7:56pm

A worried mother has told the meeting her daughter does not feel safe walking along the footpath (Great Western Way) to get home from school.

She has asked where police are, in terms of moving along people who are committing anti-social behaviour.

 

7:55pm

That's particularly important when talking about reducing crime.

 

7:54pm

A new model of drug and alcohol treatment is to be introduced in December, the meeting hears.

Addaction, the provider, will be going into schools and communities to do a lot of prevention work.

 

7:47pm

Superintendent Sue Thomas said that although we shouldn't have to be considering a knife amnesty in Hereford we are in that position where all options must be looked at.

 

7:46pm

Councillor Jim Kenyon said Hereford City Council is trying to organise an operation on the lines to trim back the hedging.

He suggests a campaign against knife-crime, similar to the campaign carried out before Christmas with drink driving.

 

7:43pm

Some residents feeling frustrated. Shouts of 'we don't feel safe as it is'.

 

7:42pm

Engineers will be sent out to measure the light levels, and if they are not right they will be sorted out, he said.

 

7:41pm

Cllr Powell admits he has 'absolutely no idea' why it has taken so long.

 

7:40pm

Colin James, from the Hereford Voice website, says a friend of his was murdered on the lines in 1991.

"Why has it taken two murders to discuss CCTV? We've been asking for CCTV, a clearance on the lines and additional lighting for some time."

 

7:38pm

Members of the public are now going to ask questions.

 

7:38pm

She has implored Herefordshire Council to install CCTV as soon as possible.

 

7:37pm

A letter has just been read out on behalf of Christian Bagley's mother.

 

7:36pm

CCTV should be installed by the end of September, he said.

It will be a single, permanent camera funded by section 106 money, with town and parish councils funding the running costs.

There are further plans to deploy a number of mobile units, which are hoped to be operational in the near future.

 

7:32pm

Councillor Graham Powell, chairman of the community safety partnership, has now taken the microphone.

 

7:31pm

Anyone with any information at all is urged to contact police on 101.

There will be further arrests in the near future, he said, but the evidence must be built up.

 

7:29pm

The investigation has proven to be challenging on a number of fronts, he said, with the attack happening away from the Hunderton estate and at a time when few pedestrians were around.

 

7:28pm

The reason we are here today is to support one another, he said.

 

7:27pm

Police are reviewing hours of CCTV, he said, from over 100 locations.

Over 1,000 individuals have been contacted in the course of enquiries and over 500 statements have been taken by people.

 

7:23pm

Detective Chief Inspector Leighton Harding now briefing the meeting about the ongoing investigation into the murder of Christian Bagley.

 

7:21pm

She added that residents were encouraged to communicate with their local policing team.

 

7:20pm

CCTV would probably not have prevented the crime, but it probably would have assisted with the investigation, she said.

"CCTV isn't the answer to all the problems to know what's going on on the lines. It's been an issue within the local community for some time.

"We have been listening and working with local councillors for some time to consider what the options are."

She is considering utilising some finances, working with Herefordshire Council and supporting CCTV options.

 

7:16pm

Public have a key role to play, she says.

There is an ongoing operation on the lines regarding drug dealing. There is background work happening as well as a visible police presence.

 

7:13pm

There have been vacancies in the policing team, she said, but by October this year there will be more staff on the South Wye tean than is required by the PCC.

 

7:11pm

"I'm very concerned that you may not feel safe and that you may not want to contact us and tell us what's happening and I'm also concerned when I hear things like Hunderton and the lines is a 'no-go area'," she said.

 

7:08pm

As local police commander she is very aware of the concerns of local residents regarding the Great Western Way.

 

7:07pm

Superintendent Sue Thomas is now speaking to those in attendance.

 

7:04pm

The meeting has been called due to insecurity in the area following the murder of Christian Bagley in June and a serious assault in the early hours of Sunday morning.

 

7:01pm

Councillor Chris Chappell is chairing tonight's meeting.

 

6:51pm

Members of the public are now starting to arrive at the Kindle Centre.

 

5:22pm

Good evening!

I'll be live blogging from tonight's public meeting at the Kindle Centre from 7pm.

Check back from then for updates.

- Jess

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Personally, I thought it was a good meeting and was certainly needed. It was informative and I think a lot of people learned a lot this evening. The police brought us up to speed with the murder enquiry of Christian Bagley.

It is welcoming news that the first CCTV camera is currently being installed on the GWW and will be operational in September with additional mobile CCTC camera's in other key locations along the GWW, so the campaigning paid off, unfortunately though, I believe Christian's murder has contributed significantly in speeding up that process.

 

I thought that the police were candid in explaining the constraints and lack of resources and funds that they have to work with, which not everybody fully grasped and as a result a few people walked out but probably through frustration more than anything.

 

I was the first up with my questions and concerns as blogged by Jess Phillips from the HT

 

7:40pm

 

Colin James, from the Hereford Voice website, says a friend of his was murdered on the lines in 1991.

"Why has it taken two murders to discuss CCTV? We've been asking for CCTV, a clearance on the lines and additional lighting for some time."

 

 

I also managed to take a photograph of the panel.

 

GWW Meeting.jpg

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Meeting was very informative, I thought Cllr Chappell was a little rude to Glenda and so was Cllr Powell, no need for that but to be fair to Cllr Chappell calling this meeting was a very good idea and there were a lot of local people present.

 

Colin spoke well and asked the right questions in my opinion and he was well received, also good to see that Hv campaign with support from GVP when she was a councillor has paid off with the announcement that the first cctv in going in next month with other smaller mobile ones too.  :Thumbs-Up:

 

Some people got angry and stormed out.

 

Good to see local councillors present and a big turnout from IOC. 

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For me the meeting was OK.

I don't live in Hunderton but am a regular cycling user of GWW. I'm not sure what people expected to get over and above what they were told. 

I believe that we should all feel secure enough to walk around the city at any time and we should not give into the fear that bad behaviour and criminality bring. Show them that we are not scared of them. I know it is difficult but at some point we have to take a stand.

When Hunderton is "figuratively" flooded with police the perpetrators will only move elsewhere - a point made by Cllr Powers.

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8:20pm

Resources cannot be taken from other parts of the county, says Superintendent Thomas.
"It is not an unsafe area," she adds, but calls for residents to communicate with police and report incidents.
The attack which happened last weekend is not being linked to the murder of Christian Bagley.

 

"It is not an unsafe area," according to the local Police Commander. Her comment may be relevant to something else she may have been comparing it to but she doesn't seem to grasp that there's a difference between the figures her computer spews out and what people perceive when they live there or nearby. 

 

There's no reference in the blog to the Supt. mentioning that the WMP budget has been slashed year on year for a few years now. If she had mentioned that then it would have been a valid point as opposed to shifting the blame.

 

Perhaps someone at the meeting  can clarify if the relative shoestring budget the WMP are now on was discussed.

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"It is not an unsafe area," according to the local Police Commander. Her comment may be relevant to something else she may have been comparing it to but she doesn't seem to grasp that there's a difference between the figures her computer spews out and what people perceive when they live there or nearby. 

 

There's no reference in the blog to the Supt. mentioning that the WMP budget has been slashed year on year for a few years now. If she had mentioned that then it would have been a valid point as opposed to shifting the blame.

 

Perhaps someone at the meeting  can clarify if the relative shoestring budget the WMP are now on was discussed.

 

To be fair to Superintendent Thomas, she did her utmost to explain in great detail the lack of resources she has to work with but went on to try and reassure local people that she has been given some extra funds which she will be using towards additional CCTV and other plans from my understanding. 

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For me the meeting was OK.

I don't live in Hunderton but am a regular cycling user of GWW. I'm not sure what people expected to get over and above what they were told. 

I believe that we should all feel secure enough to walk around the city at any time and we should not give into the fear that bad behaviour and criminality bring. Show them that we are not scared of them. I know it is difficult but at some point we have to take a stand.

When Hunderton is "figuratively" flooded with police the perpetrators will only move elsewhere - a point made by Cllr Powers.

 

I didn't realise you were there, I wish you had of come over and introduced yourself. 

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Agreed Roger...Arrived back into the County late so picked up on meeting based on blog.

 

I was impressed and I've contacted the reporter to say so. 

 

Meanwhile here are the stop/search figures for June for the end of 'The Lines' where the tragic Murder of Christian Bagley took place on 21st June 2015. These figures will include the 9 days immediately after the murder.

 

stop.jpg

 

June are the latest figures available.

 

Here are the 'crimes' for June.

 

stats.jpg

 

June figures are the latest available on the Police.UK website. People can surf that at their leisure if they so wish.

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