Warwickshire News Mine

An experiment using OpenCalais and Google Maps to tag news stories

Awards recognise community safety initiatives in Warwickshire

The dedicated individuals behind a project to reduce criminal damage in Warwickshire and the design of two community safety websites have been recognised at an annual awards ceremony.

Warwickshire County Council’s Community Protection Awards 2007, held in Rugby recently, not only recognised the achievements of fire fighters from Warwickshire Fire and Rescue Service but also members of the county’s Community Safety Team.

The awards were presented by the county council’s Portfolio Holder for Community Protection, Councillor Richard Hobbs.

Julie Sullivan, Corporate Community Safety Manager at Warwickshire County Council, was presented with a certificate and a trophy for her achievement, after she gained dedicated funding from the Government Office of the West Midlands (GOWM) for specific projects to address criminal damage in the county.

Julie was congratulated for her initiative, working with partners including Warwickshire Probation Service and Warwickshire Police, and for overseeing the implementation of the projects.

These included a countywide ‘defensive planting’ scheme, where funding was used to buy thousands of prickly plants and anti-vandal paint.

Areas around the county that had suffered graffiti and damage in the past, and would therefore benefit from the plants and paint, were identified by local PCSOs (Police Community Safety Officers).

Warwickshire Probation Service then organised people who were serving complete and unpaid work orders to plant the spiky vegetation and paint walls and fences in the relevant areas.

There has recently been a steady reduction in reported incidents of criminal damage in Warwickshire.

Peter Lancaster, Community Safety Administration Officer at Warwickshire County Council, was presented with a certificate and glass plaque in recognition of his ‘exceptional work’ creating two websites.

They are a dedicated Community Safety website (http://www.warwickshire.gov.uk/communitysafety), which includes links to information ranging from fire safety to road safety; and a website for Warwickshire’s Drug and Alcohol Action Team (DAAT) (http://www.warwickshire.gov.uk/drugs), which gives people access to alcohol and drugs advice and information about services in Warwickshire.

The Warwickshire Drug and Alcohol Action Team website has also been short-listed for a national ‘Positive Practice Award’ as part of the team’s Alcohol Harm Reduction work. The team will find out in December whether they have won the national award at an awards ceremony at London’s Royal Lancaster Hotel.