Crime and ASB reduced in Hereford City Centre

Hereford City Centre reduces crime by 20% and ASB by 22% as part of Team Hereford initiative.

Team Hereford, a partnership initiative launched in 2016 provides a collaborative approach to addressing key issues in Hereford. West Mercia Police (WMP), Vennture, Hereford BID, Herefordshire Council, The Old Market, Hereford CCTV, Hereford Retail Radio, Close House Youth Centre, No Wrong Door Youth Support Services and local Church groups have been making in-roads into reducing crime and anti-social behaviour in the city centre that we know affects our community and local businesses.

Each partner involved in Team Hereford brings their individual expertise, experience and the voices of those that they represent and has contributed to a reduction of crime by 20% and ASB by 22% in the city centre*.

A key theme of Team Hereford is city safety and security. The team work closely every weekend to reduce incidents and to protect vulnerable people. An example of this is Vennture’s new ‘Lean on Me’ scheme that provides a volunteer run pathway for door staff, Police and Street Pastors to refer individuals to. Volunteers undergo rigorous medical training so that they can assess people referred to them to make sure that they are safe to stay with them until friends or family get them home safely.

A 12 month focus into reducing street drinking, aggressive begging and ASB has also been taking place. Various components are encompassed including housing support, support for any drug/alcohol dependency and hot food provision. Where help isn’t engaged with Community Protection Notices and Criminal Behaviour Orders are being utilised to help protect local businesses and the community.

Team Hereford have been working hard to divert young people away from crime/ASB. This can includes referrals to the likes of No Wrong Door/ YSS for follow up mentoring and support and weekly activities at the Castle Green. This provides an opportunity for young people to engage in various activities and to chat with youth workers.

The Safer Neighbourhood Team have also been working closely with South Wye Boxing Club and have recently run the Fit & Fed programme. This ran every day throughout the summer holidays at South Wye Boxing Club providing free boxing sessions and free hot meals to young people in the area. The programme is being expanded to reach additional parts of the community.

Safer Neighbourhood Team Inspector, Greg Tudge said: “We have worked hard with all our partners as part of Team Hereford and we are seeing great results in the city centre. Not only are the figures reflective with crime down by 20% and ASB 22%, the feedback from the community including local businesses and the hard to reach young people we engage with has been really positive.

“It is great to be a part of some positive proactive policing in the city where we are making a real difference. We will continue to work closely with our partners to develop initiatives to protect the most vulnerable and to tackle crime and ASB in the city”

Mike Truelove, Operations and Marketing Manager of Hereford Business Improvement District said: “We are delighted to see such a huge drop in city centre crime which is evident on the streets and by businesses who are reporting less often to us at the Hereford Business Improvement District using our DISC security app.

“For many years, much angst and concern for local businesses was caused with anti-social behaviour such as aggressive begging, shop theft and public drug use. Under the leadership of Inspector Tudge and the great work of his team, we have seen great strides made both in pursuing active criminals but also building upon and strengthening the great partnership work between West Mercia Police, Hereford BID and other partners of Team Hereford such as CCTV, Retail Radio and Vennture.

He continued: “We would very much like to thank Inspector Tudge and his team for the ongoing support provided to businesses and are extremely pleased Hereford City centre is earning a deserved reputation as a safe and pleasant place to work, shop and relax in.”