Also available to download or print here: > Police and PCC Meeting Minutes 25 October 2021
Woldingham Police and Police Crime Commissioner Village Meeting
Held on Monday 25 October 2021
In the Lecture Room of the Village Hall
5 members of the local police force:
PC Guy Warner
PC Tom Warwick
PCSO’s Amy Ord and Danusia Maltby
Simon Evans – Crime Reduction Advisor and Designing Out Crime Officer
Lisa Townsend (Police and Crime Commissioner)
SCC Becky Rush
Keeping Woldingham Safe
50 Residents in person
20 Residents on zoom
SCC Becky Rush welcome everyone to the meeting and outlined why the meeting had been held due to the recent rise in crime from lockdown onwards, arson on the Glebe, vans being broken into, burglaries and this has resulted in a WhatsApp group being established and a Facebook page being set up called Keeping Woldingham Safe and representatives from that Group are in attendance tonight. The idea of the meeting is so that Groups and residents can express their concerns and find out what could be done about it. The Police would be asked for an update on their policing across Tandridge and what initiatives they have going on and then Lisa will then update on Policing from the Crime Commissioner point of view and then there will be a question-and-answer session and the main aim is for the meeting to be a positive one on how we can move forward as a village and work with the Police to feel safer in Woldingham.
SCC Becky Rush advised the meeting that there used to be a fund in the Village which finished in 2013 to pay for a dedicated PCSO this would not be discussed in the meeting as no one at the meeting is high enough up the chain to make this decision but assured that the matter is being looked at and on the table for consideration, but we do not know what the outcome will be. No individual cases will be discussed at the meeting but advised that people can follow up after the meeting.
Geoffrey King asked what Woldingham can do to insure that Woldingham gets a dedicated PCSO as the funds are available for this to happen. SCC Becky Rush advised that there is no doubt that the funds are there but there is a question of resources.
SCC Becky Rush advised that along with Borough Commander Karen Hughes it has been agreed that a working party will be set up along with a small selection of residents and groups within the village. To look at and get some action on crime within the village.
Guy Warner one of the Tandridge Policing team introduced himself to the meeting and asked his fellow four colleagues to introduce themselves as listed above.
Guy advised the meeting the priorities which had been put in place by senior management team, domestic abuse, child protection and pursing high crime offenders. Linked in with that it has been identified by Borough Commander Karen Hughes to protect the most vulnerable in our communities, pursing offenders, reducing crime disorder and anti-social behaviour, burglaries, and rural crime.
Guy advised that within Tandridge we have Borough Commander Karen Hughes, 10 PCSO, 3 sergeants and 7 PC’s. Five response teams at Caterham on a 24-hour rota basis.
Crime data was share from October 2020 to October 2021 as there was a perception that crime was increasing in Woldingham and Guy hope that this would alleviate some of the fears.
Burglaries Dwellings and Non Dwellings:
Violent Crimes and Assault:
Advised the meeting that rural crime is a top priority and rural areas are targeted everyday by criminals, poaching, theft and cruelty offenses. A new rural PCSO Kerry Furlong has been appointed.
Rural crime training has now been delivered to the whole of the Tandridge team to upskill their knowledge in dealing with offenders and rural crimes. Two neighbourhood officers at Tandridge have now been allocated to rural crimes and burglary patrols every weekend up until December and they will be dealing with offences they come across and the investigations that follow and this resource will be reviewed again in December 2021.
New equipment is due soon to assist in tracking offenders and 500 DNA kits have been purchased to assist those areas that have been targeted in burglaries. ANPR (automatic, number plate recognition) locations have been finalised around Tandridge to form a shield and the installation and completion date is November 2021.
PC Tom Warwick advised that there have been 9 burglaries in Woldingham in the past year. Two incidents were stopped by the homeowners and the Police responded within 7 minutes and these resulted in arrests. Youth crime has been a large problem within the borough and the Police have done a lot of work which has reduced the problem dramatically.
Simon Evans advised the meeting that Woldingham would benefit from having ANPR cameras installed and will liaise with the Parish Council to put at the 3 entry points in the Village which would provide a shield around the Village. The Parish Council would purchase, and the Police would maintain. The cameras are approximately £9,000 including VAT per camera and these help with investigation enquiries.
Lisa Townsend advised that she is now 5 months into the role and has been spending a lot of time with the Police all over the County. Lisa’s main role is to hold the Borough
Commander to account and make sure that the road map is being delivered. Lisa reminded the meeting that crime must be reported as need the data to react to crime and advised on the way to report crime.
Becky advised the meeting that she had received a number of questions in advance of the meeting:
“What percentage of Police Officers not PCSO’s are behind desks rather than being out in the community” – this is an impossible question to answers as evidence gathering and case building involves a lot of Officers time and is time consuming. If an Officer makes an arrest, then there is a strong possibility that they will be off the street and dealing with the investigation and maybe the following day too. Sickness and annual leave also have an impact on numbers across all departments.
“Are we going to have a PCSO – are you going to be able to hold weekly meetings in the scout hut or village shop and could you make suggestions on how homeowners could make their homes safer and more secure” – due to resources these won’t happen every week or every month but doesn’t mean to say we can’t do them and will discuss with Danusia to sort something out.
Lisa advised that she holds a surgery on the first Friday of every month online and people are welcome to join.
“Although Caterham Valley Police Station shows that it is open daily to visitors as shown on the website – it is in fact closed to visitors, why and should the website be updated and also where is the nearest Police Station that is open” – Caterham Police Station is open 24 hours a day with a neighbourhood and response team, traffic and trading department. There is no front counter but if you wish to report a crime in person there is a phone facility. If you wish to speak to a person face to face then your nearest Police station is Reigate where there is a front counter.
“What is the best way to report a crime, many people are frustrated with 101” – if the crime is happening right now and there is a danger to person then 999 is the way forward. 101 is for non emergency calls. If you want to provide information on a crime then there is an on line form to use or on social media platforms facebook or twitter which also have a reporting form built into them. You can also use crimestoppers.
“What can we expect from the Police when reporting a crime, some of us have offered CCTV
Footage to the Police but this has not been accepted and the non attendance of the Police. If we call something in what can we expect” – what you expect goes back to if the crime is happening now then a deployment of officers will go to your location to deal with the intendent. It depends on the crime type, if your reporting something that is historic, or theft for example of a lawn-mover you will probably not get a deployment at all. Deployment is made on the risk or harm to the public. You should always be given a crime reference number.
A question was raised by a resident attending the meeting that if a van was turned over and reported and no Police are deployed how does it make the victim feel – questions are asked when reporting the crime is there any cctv available, anything left at the scene all these will be explored and if all the answers are negative then an officer will not be deployed. It will be done over the phone and a crime reference number added and given.
Lisa Townsend advised that Policing has had to adapt – our most vulnerable either elderly or young are most at risk in their own home and online.
Becky asked Tom to provide an information schedule to go in the Woldingham Magazine, Woldingham.com and on face so all residents have the information to hand as to which number to call and when.
Concern was raised with the drug dealing at the Glebe and the Viewpoint. Residents were reminded that crime must be reported for the Police to be made aware and act.
Jane Torrence advised that she is stepping down as the co-ordinator of Neighbourhood Watch and a volunteer is needed to carry this on. It was hoped that NHW and Keeping Woldingham Safe could amalgamate. Becky stressed the importance of NHW as it is covered with regard to having people’s data and direct information from the police but it was agreed that whatsapp is the way forward to get immediate information out and received.
Speedwatch was raised – a resident advised that he had given his name to the Parish Council over 2 years ago. A number of volunteers are needed to make this viable and PSCO Amy Ord will work with the Parish Council to get this moving and set up.
Actions Agreed from the Meeting:
Establishment of a Policing Working Group – agreed with Borough Commander Karen Hughes (will include representatives from Parish Council, Woldingham Association, Keeping Woldingham Safe Group and a couple of residents)
Holding of a Police surgery before Christmas to offer advice on security and safety