New PCSOs tackle crime in Cheltenham town centre
MEET Cheltenham's new team of police community safety officers (PCSOs), out to prevent crime on a daily basis.
As part of a reshuffle to front line policing, some new faces have been introduced to the town centre to make its visitors and residents feel much safer.
Ross Nicholl, PCSO for Lower High Street and Royal Well, said: "Our key area of business, if you like, is talking to the community and to provide them with a highly-visible patrol.
"We are here to reassure the public and it is good for them to be able to come to us with any issues.
Bring a friend to Yoga with Evelyn at 8pm on Wednesdays, and get...View details
Bring a friend to Evelyn’s “Yoga” class on Wednesdays at 8-9pm, and get your class half for only £3. Offer open to non-members. Contact Natasha on 07958 520042 for details.
Terms: Class running at Fitness4Less, Grosvenor terrace. Non-members welcome.
Valid until: Friday, January 31 2014
"Many of the issues we are approached about are home security – that's the main thing that pops up – and also cold callers. Our advice is to lock windows and doors as a lot burglaries are due to insecure homes."
PCSOs are also assigned to Cheltenham's retail sector to focus on reducing shop-related crime.
James Holyoake, retail liaison officer for the High Street, said: "Shoplifting and fraud are the main issues for retailers.
"Gangs of three of four at a time will come to the town to hit as many shops as they can in one go and then run off.
"What we need to do is advise retailers and shop owners to be more vigilant and make sure someone is always on the shop floor.
"CCTV is the best resource but not all shops can afford it in times of recession. Although it does not always deter criminals, it does prove to be a useful tool to gather evidence."
PCSOs were joined by members of Cheltenham Borough Council crime prevention team and Gloucestershire fire officers during their introduction yesterday.
Paul Barratt, community safety advisor for the fire service, said: "Our job is to offer the public safety tips and make appointments at people's homes carry out fire safety checks.
"No home shouldn't be without a fire alarm.
"They are important because they save lives."
To order a safety check, visit www.glosfire.gov.uk or call 0800 180 4140.