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Date issued: 4 December 2018
A dedicated Town Centre Team made up of Special Constables, Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs) and a Police Constable has been recruited by Essex Police as part of the Colchester Town Centre Action Plan (TCAP) – a multi-agency project delivered in partnership by Essex Police, Colchester Borough Council and Colchester Borough Homes.
This week (commencing 3 December) sees the formal start date for the new team whose appointment marks a major step forward in the delivery of TCAP, designed to crack down on crime and anti-social behaviour in the town centre.
Cllr Mike Lilley, Portfolio Holder for Planning, Public Safety & Licencing, said: “I’m very pleased to welcome the new members of Team Ten on board. This strong partnership will equip us with the skills and resources to call time on street drinking, anti-social behaviour, aggressive begging and drug use in the town centre to ensure the town is a safe, welcoming and attractive town for everyone.”
Team Ten has been made possible thanks to a £300,000 investment by Colchester Borough Council as part of Better Colchester, a £2 million strategic programme to make Colchester an even better place to live, work in and visit. It has been match-funded by Essex Police and includes existing members of Colchester’s Community Policing Team.
The uniformed police team, which comprises one police constable, four Special Constables and four PCSOs, will be led by Sergeant Nathan Suley, selected for his experience in community policing in the town. After a period of training for the new PCSOs, all will have the power to tackle crime and anti-social behaviour through an agreed process of enforcement actions.
An anti-social behaviour officer from Colchester Borough Homes will also join Team Ten in early 2019. In addition to the team, there will be a newly recruited PCSO working in rural communities.
Team Ten join forces with the borough council’s existing team of Zone Wardens, Licensing Officers and Anti-Social Behaviour Officers. All will be highly visible in the town centre and will focus their patrols on known ‘hot spot’ areas in the town as identified through weekly TCAP meetings and supported by a wider partnership of stakeholders such as COLBAC, Pubwatch and Community 360.
In addition, the team will support and improve services to victims within the community and ensure appropriate referrals and safeguarding considerations are made for vulnerable persons.
Chief Inspector Shaun Kane, District Commander for Colchester, said: “Earlier this year I made a pledge that residents will see the difference these new officers and PCSOs will make on top of the work we’re already doing on issues like street drinking, aggressive begging and disorder in the town centre.
“So, I’m thrilled to have appointed our Team Ten members, who will be out on the beat and tackling crime and anti-social behaviour, helping to keep the town centre even safer.
“They will complement our growing Community Safety family, and I look forward to developing plans to formalise a Rural Policing Team for Colchester borough in 2019, building further on our partnership work.”
The TCAP partnership identifies individuals or groups who are involved in criminal activity or anti-social behaviour in the town and looks to deal with them in the most appropriate way. This may be via increased enforcement and the issue of penalty notices or where appropriate, support from partner organisations, outreach coordinators and homelessness organisations.
TCAP is led by Colchester Borough Council’s Community Safety Team, along with Essex Police, Colchester Borough Homes and other members of the Safer Colchester Partnership. For more information visit: www.safercolchester.co.uk/