Published on 28th July 2020

Cheshire’s police and crime commissioner (PCC) David Keane has secured £550,000 in funding for a project to reduce burglaries in Warrington.

The government grant will be used by Cheshire police to crack down on burglary and theft in the Bewsey and Whitecross areas of the town.

The money will go towards measures proven to cut crime. These include an individual security assessment for every property and improving measures where required; it will also involve the roll-out of Cheshire police’s successful Operation Shield in the area – a DNA property marking exercise which has reduced burglary by up to 83 per cent in other areas of Cheshire.

There will also be simple changes to the design of streets such as increased street-lighting and the installation of CCTV alongside intensive work by Local Officers with the community to develop Neighbourhood Watch schemes for every street.

The funding will also be used to bring Warrington’s problem solving team to the area with a police sergeant, six constables and local authorities representatives dedicated to working with the community to develop local problem solving approaches and community resilience.

PCC David Keane said: “I am delighted to have secured this funding to make Bewsey and Whitecross safer for all its residents.

“Acquisitive offences are the crimes that the public are most likely to encounter. Not only do they blight our communities, they also make residents fearful in their own homes.

“This funding will allow us to work even more closely with our community safety partners to ensure there is a real focus on community policing in the area and tactics that either remove opportunities to commit these crimes or act as a deterrent by increasing the chances of an offender being caught.”

The grant has come from the government’s Safer Streets Fund - set up with the aim of stopping offences that blight communities and cause misery to victims from happening in the first place.

Thirty-five police and crime commissioners are to receive funding from the £25 million scheme to crack down on burglary and theft in crime hotspots across the country.

Following a bidding process, grants of up to £550,000 are being provided to PCCs in England and Wales for projects to improve security in areas particularly affected by acquisitive crimes such as burglary, vehicle theft and robbery.

Following painstaking analysis across the whole county, the Bewsey and Whitecross area was selected by the PCC and Warrington local policing unit for the funding as it best fit the outlined criteria and provided the greatest opportunity to invest and realise benefit for the community.

Chief superintendent Martin Cleworth, from Warrington local policing unit, added: “This is fantastic news and we can’t wait to get started as soon as possible to help improve the local community and make a real difference.

“Burglary is a serious offence in which victims are targeted in their own home, which is ultimately the place you should be able to feel most safe.

“This funding will provide a great opportunity for officers to work with partners to reduce crime and overall improve community safety in Bewsey.”