By Steve Hayes 12/03 Updated: 16/03 09:31
CCTV coverage in Stratford will return to 24/7 monitoring after an arrangement was reached to plug a funding gap.
After meetings between Stratford Town Council and Stratford District Council representatives an agreement has finally been reached with the town council pledging £25,000 to the service.
We reported previously how a £52,000 gap needed to be plugged to allow for the return of 24/7 monitoring after the district council, which runs the service, cut coverage to bring down costs.
The agreement comes after concerns were expressed about the impact of losing monitoring on the 87 cameras in the district, particularly at nighttime when operators can alert police and businesses to any problems.
A spokesperson for the town council said after a number of on-going meetings at the town hall, a 'satisfactory conclusion' had finally been reached, with funding assured for a three-year term.
An application for funding has been made to Stratford Town Trust - who are understood to have agreed in principal to contribute thousands.
Other parish councils have put £8,000 towards the £52,000 gap and Stratford District Council has agreed to 'plug the gap' if a deficit still remains.
Henley, Shipston and Wellesbourne are still reviewing their position, but not all parishes have agreed to contribute.
Where councils choose to make a contribution of less than their allotted amount, pro-rata arrangements will be made, and those choosing not to participate will continue to have cameras monitored only at times covered by SDC funding.
Mayor, Bill Dowling, said he was delighted an agreement had been reached.
He said: "I see CCTV as a vital tool for averting and monitoring crime and anti-social behaviour in the area, which is certainly not just a night time occurrence.
"I am grateful to Mike Brain, of the district council, for his positive action in furthering this cause and to all the other parish councils who agree that safety in the community must always come first."
And technical services chief, Coun Brain, said the move would allow people to stay safe.
He said: "This shows what can be accomplished when organisations work in partnership to deliver results for the town and district.
"To be able to restore full time monitoring of the CCTV service is a positive result as CCTV coverage is important in protecting residents from crime and disorder, anti-social behaviour and allowing them to feel safe in our main market towns and larger communities."
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