December 9 2013 Latest news:
Dominic Bareham, senior reporter
Wednesday, December 19, 2012
A shortlist of four companies bidding to run a new CCTV system in two Norfolk towns has been whittled down to two candidates.
The South Norfolk Community Safety Partnership is set to decide in January which of the two remaining companies will be responsible for setting up the cameras in Diss and Wymondham to combat anti-social behaviour and other crimes in the towns.
Mike Pursehouse, communities manager at South Norfolk Council, said the partnership had received £64,000 funding from Home Office and council grants, enough to cover the cost of setting up 10 cameras in each town.
The company would then be responsible for running the cameras, which will be overseen by a group of between five and 10 volunteers who would man the CCTV system at peak times, such as on Friday and Saturday nights.
The footage from the cameras is set to be recorded 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Once the partnership had selected the preferred bidder, Mr Pursehouse said, a planning application would then be submitted to enable the cameras would be installed by next spring.
The aim of the CCTV system is to reduce crime by deterring criminals, reduce the fear of crime to shop staff and members of the public in the town centre, create a secure trading environment, increase police detection rates by identifying offenders and give visitors and residents increased confidence about visiting the town centre, which would raise the numbers coming in.
A Norfolk police report suggests installing CCTV could reduce the number of crimes from 351 to 261 per year, while saving the police £56,254.
Mr Pursehouse said: “We have got the money in place and soon we will have the company in place, so we are hoping to be up and running by the spring, it just depends on locations.”