Community day to celebrate Wirral 'Safer Streets' project


Wirral Council, Merseyside Police and the Police and Crime Commissioner are hosting a community day on Wednesday, (15 December) to show people how the second phase of funding for the Wirral ‘Safer Streets’ project has been used in parts of Birkenhead and Seacombe to make those areas safer.

Earlier this year, the ‘Safer Streets 1’ project saw an investment of £550,000 in North Birkenhead area.

This funding has been used to upgrade existing CCTV to digital, complemented by the creation of a new CCTV control room which is equipped with a state-of-the art digital video management system. In the community itself, 43 alleygates were installed; 18 community clean-up days were held and street lighting was upgraded.

In addition to improved safety in the area, feedback from this first project has also seen further benefits for local residents including improved and more secure communal spaces; a safer environment for children; improved community relations; less fly tipping and increases in house prices.

Based on these successes, Wirral Council, Merseyside Police and the Police Commissioner have been successful in a bid for an additional round of investment to conduct a second Safer Streets project, focussing on new locations in Central Birkenhead and Seacombe.

This latest project aims to reduce burglary by five per cent and will also include work and initiatives to tackle anti-social behaviour; fires; drug dealing; drug-related crime; fly tipping and dog fouling.

Thanks to funding of £432,000 those initiatives will include new and upgraded CCTV sites; installation of new alleygates; multiple community clean up days; updated street lighting and a range of target hardening measures.

As a mark of celebration, a community day will take place on Wednesday 15th December, and members of the communities of Seacombe and Central Birkenhead are invited to come along.

The Seacombe event, which takes place on Borough Road between 10am and 11.30am, gives members of the community a chance to meet representatives from the council, policing and local businesses, who will be able to talk through the benefits of ‘Safer Streets 2’, whilst at the same time listening to any concerns they may have. Children from the nearby Riversdale Primary School will be getting in the Christmas swing with a special carol concert.

The event will then move to the shopping area outside the Pyramids shopping centre on Grange Road, Birkenhead, and take on a more business and local economy focus, with members of the public able to speak to a range of people from local shops and businesses, along with representatives from Wirral Council and Merseyside Police, who will be on hand to talk about the positive impacts from these new initiatives in the area.

Merseyside’s Police Commissioner Emily Spurrell said: “This event is a fantastic way to come together with the community to celebrate the achievements of the Safer Streets projects on the Wirral.

“With burglaries, theft and vehicle crime falling and house prices rising in the area and cleaner, safer environments for residents and their children to enjoy, it is clear these projects have been a major success already, and the benefits are set to last for many years to come.

“I’m looking forward to taking a tour of these areas to see how they have been rejuvenated and meet partners, business owners and residents to find out about the impact on them and get their views on how we continue to make their streets safer.”

Cllr. Helen Cameron, Chair of the Tourism, Communities, Culture and Leisure Committee, said: “It is fantastic to see another round of the Safer Streets initiative come to fruition, enabling partners to deliver tangible benefits for residents and businesses in parts of central Birkenhead and Seacombe, with new CCTV cameras and alleygates installed, upgraded streetlights and home security packs provided to residents.

“Crime and anti-social behaviour not only brings an area down, but can make the people who live there feel that no-one cares. Investing in preventative approaches like alleygates and streetlights, while they may seem small, can make a big difference in helping people feel more secure and happy. Everyone deserves to feel safe in their home and their local community.”

Local Policing Superintendent Martin Earl said: “The Safer Streets project has been a huge success for the Wirral, receiving more than £980k in government funding, which has been instrumental in helping us tackle some of the key hotspot areas and make a real impact on reducing crime and anti-social behaviour issues.

“Everyone coming together to celebrate these achievements through this community day is really important way of communicating the impact that these initiatives have had and will continue to bring going forwards. It also provides our policing team with the opportunity to speak to our communities directly, listening to their concerns and learn how we can work together to make a difference.”