Don't miss a story sign up to Sidmouth Herald's FREE daily newsletter CLICK HERE

Police team up with business for neighbourhood solution

PUBLISHED: 08:30 30 March 2014

PCSO Jay Bowden, residents Mary Whitfield and Cynthia Watson, Nick Beavis of Sid Valley Metalwork, Ebdon Court homeowner Steve Chalkley and Sidmouth police sergeant Andy Squires by the new gate at Ebdon Court

PCSO Jay Bowden, residents Mary Whitfield and Cynthia Watson, Nick Beavis of Sid Valley Metalwork, Ebdon Court homeowner Steve Chalkley and Sidmouth police sergeant Andy Squires by the new gate at Ebdon Court

Archant

Police thinking and private funding have combined to banish a plague of drunken revellers from a Sidmouth courtyard and end the homeowners’ sleepless nights.

Gates have been installed at Ebdon Court to keep those who use it for sex, defecating and drug use at bay and restore the residents sense of wellbeing.

Sergeant Andy Squires worked for months to find a solution after spotting the issue when he arrived last July and it has already proved effective – even unlocked.

“It’s taken a lot of different agencies working together to make it happen,” he said.

“You just need the right approach. I’m grateful to Sidmouth Garden Centre for helping make it happen.”

Various solutions had been sought, such as introducing a so-called ‘mosquito’ system, which broadcasts a high-frequency noise that only youngsters can hear. The police sergeant had used similar measures at another neighbourhood when he worked in Exmouth so knew what was most effective.

Residents now have keys to lock the gates overnight to block the way to anyone tempted to misuse the courtyard.

Funding came, in part, from Sidmouth Garden Centre owner Ian Barlow, who said: “The town always supports us and we always try to support the community – it’s something more businesses should do.”

He suggested that Sgt Squires approach his town council colleagues to back the project, and had already started the ball rolling when they declined.

Members said they did not want to create a gated community, fearing it would just displace the problem.

Ebdon Court resident Steve Chalkley said: “Underage drinking and antisocial behaviour issues have blighted the town centre for years.

“Sgt Squires has certainly brought a fresh approach to dealing with these incidents. This is an example of neighbourhood policing and thinking outside of the box at its very best.”

Father and son team Nick and Scott Beavis from Sid Valley Metalwork installed the gates free of charge after sourcing them elsewhere in the town.

He said: “They’ll make a difference whether they’re locked or not – it’s a perception.”

Other News Stories

25 minutes ago

Plans to convert an existing building into permanent warden accommodation at a Salcombe Regis holiday park have been granted on appeal.

Read more
Yesterday, 18:30

Dive journalist Mark Taylor Hutchinson gives a first hand account of getting up close with the world’s largest sharks.

Read more
Yesterday, 17:00

Ottery’s neighbourhood police team will welcome a new officer in the coming months but there are no plans ‘at this time’ for a new PCSO.

Read more
Yesterday, 07:06

East Devon District Council (EDDC) is checking that householders who claim a 25 per cent council tax discount for living alone are still entitled to it.

Read more
Yesterday, 07:00

New pay-and-display parking charges aimed at raising additional revenue for the Manor Pavilion could end up costing it £2,000 if a group leaves after 50 years.

Read more
Saturday, September 23, 2017

A rescue dog who was found on the brink of death in a Romanian street is quickly becoming one of Sidmouth’s most popular residents.

Read more
Saturday, September 23, 2017

Sidmouth’s Rotarians will be out in force next week to help raise money to help those hit by natural disasters.

Read more
Saturday, September 23, 2017

Should criminals go to prison as punishment, or should they be punished while they are there?

Read more
Saturday, September 23, 2017

From the archives - here’s the full photo gallery of the 1983 Sidmouth carnival procession.

Read more
Saturday, September 23, 2017

Water utility company bosses are ‘looking at all of the available options’ to improve reliability in Newton Poppleford and end the traffic disruption caused by bursts.

Read more

Local Weather

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 15°C

min temp: 12°C

Most Read News

Useful Links

Family notices
Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Submit a Story
Buy Photos
Competitions
iwitness24
Facebook
Twitter
Google Plus Page
Reader Travel

Family Notices 24

Read Online

Image
Read the Sidmouth Herald e-edition E-edition

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Local business directory

Devon's trusted business finder

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists


Find planning applications