Neighbourhood Watch, sometimes known as Home Watch, is nationwide and one of the most successful crime prevention initiatives ever. The idea behind Neighbourhood Watch (NW) schemes is that neighbours come together to build community safety awareness and promote neighbourliness. They are led by volunteer coordinators who work with their neighbours and the local PCSO and police officers to address any local crime issues and undertake crime prevention activities. Coordinators receive information from the police to pass on to neighbours and encourage their neighbours to pass information about anything suspicious to police. Schemes can be large, covering for example, most of the households on an estate, or they might involve just half a dozen houses. Amongst the advantages of joining established NW schemes are that they are proven to reduce local crime such as burglary, vandalism, car thefts and thefts from cars. Better community spirit is also fostered, and crime prevention advice can be efficiently and quickly circulated throughout a community.
To find out if there is already a NW scheme in your area, go to www.ourwatch.org.uk and enter your postcode. If there is a scheme that already covers where you live you can ask to join it and the coordinator for the scheme will be in touch with you.
More information also obtainable from our PCSO, Michelle Gillett.
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