Message from your Safer Neighbourhood Team
Welcome to what I hope to be the start of a regular column to keep
local residents up to date with the latest trends in local crime and to
provide you with some crime prevention advice to help protect you
and your property.
Firstly, let me introduce myself. I am PC Rich Dawson and I am the
local Beat Manager for Fakenham and the surrounding parishes.
I have worked in Fakenham for 10 years on both Patrols and with the
Safer Neighbourhood Team. My role is focussed around community engagement, dealing with local issues which may not fit the criteria to be recorded as a crime and working alongside partner agencies to try and resolve local issues. I also have a close working relationship with Fakenham Academy and EP Youth engaging with our younger community members.
So what are the top 5 things keeping us busy at the moment? In no particular order:
Rural crime. Thefts from farms, building sites and remote locations. Quite often the incidents we attend are where property hasn’t had sufficient security measures put in place because ‘it’s quiet around here and nothing ever happens’. Sadly complacency will not protect us. Think about fitting trackers to farm machinery, trailers and vehicles. CCTV and security lighting is another positive step to take. If you do have any unwanted visitors try and discreetly get a vehicle registration. That is a massive help to us. There’s also the Farmwatch group or our own Fast SMS to join. For more residential properties why not try the 9pm routine. Set an alarm for 9pm and instead of sitting through the TV adverts pop the kettle on and check you’ve locked all your windows and doors for the night.
Drug related incidents. We are not a hotspot like some other towns and cities but we have our fair share and it’s not just in the towns. Small rural villages can also be subjected to the blight. If you see, or smell, something suspicious don’t keep it to yourself. Let us know so we can stamp it out together.
Fraud and Scams. Usually it’s the elderly that get caught out but it can happen to anyone. Scams have become far more sophisticated and are using well-known brands like BT, HMRC and Apple. If you’re unsure about what you’re being asked to do, don’t do it. You can report all fraud attempts to Action Fraud via their website or if you’d like a volunteer to come out and speak to you then email [email protected]
Parking. An irritation to most of us. The general rule of thumb is: can a mobility scooter or pushchair get past on the pavement and can emergency vehicles get past on the road? The other usual rules apply such as not parking or driving on pedestrian areas, not parking on yellow zigzags outside schools, on corners or in restricted zones. Fakenham Market Place is one of these as it’s in a conservation area and as such cannot have yellow road markings put down so please observe the signage.
Speeding. A regular complaint to us from right across the area. We get out as much as we can to stand by the side of the road with the speed gun and run campaigns throughout the year. If you have a particular concern in your area why not get a group of likeminded people together, minimum of 6, to start up a Community Speedwatch group. They have a real impact and details are available on request by emailing [email protected].
Well that’s it for this time. If you have any concerns you would like to raise you can either email the above address, use the ‘contact us’ form on the Constabulary website, attend one of our Engagement Surgeries which is held at Fakenham Police station on a Thursday between 1 and 3 in the afternoon or ring 101.