Wednesday December 16, 2015
David Millar (left) and H&F Borough Commander Gideon Springer at one of the crime roadshows
Residents praised the hard work by local bobbies to keep people safe despite government cuts during a series of crime roadshows.
They heard crime had fallen overall in Hammersmith, Fulham and Shepherds Bush at three local roadshows last month but raised separate, key concerns for each area.
From April 2015, H&F Council has provided a record 44 locally-funded police officers to protect residents. This came at a time when funding from the government for police was being signficantly reduced.
The new locally-funded officers are tasked with working closely with residents to prevent crime and anti-social behaviour before it takes place, and the road shows were a key way for local police to hear from residents.
In Hammersmith the number of offences has fallen from 7,554 in 2010-11 to 6,459 in 2014-15 with theft being the major issue in the area. Residents heard theft and handling stolen goods made up over 45 per cent of all crimes in the area at the event in St Paul’s Church in Queen Caroline Street.
Drug dealing, cycling on pavements and poor communication with police were the main concerns raised by residents attending on November 17.
“The area is very safe and we have a great team of officers who work to the bone however they need some help,” said Gloria Gross, 61, of Winslow Road.
“There needs to be more officers on the street fighting crime and helping to keep the streets safe.”
The stats revealed more good news at the Fulham roadshow held at Fulham Palace in Bishops Avenue, with overall crime having fallen from 6,597 to 5,722 during the past five years.
One of the biggest issues, raised by residents during the event on November 24, was the loss of Fulham Police Station, a decision taken by the Mayor of London and opposed by Hammersmith & Fulham Council.
Residents also identified nuisance calls and identify theft as key concerns.
“I could not be happier with the team of officers we have,” said Marie Thomas, 59, of Lancaster Court.
“They are still doing a great job even with all the cuts they have had to deal with. The local police always have time to speak to the residents on the estate and everyone feels safe. The PCSO even finds time to send us regular updates on what is going on in the area so that we are aware.”
Arlene Fraser, 40, of Fulham Palace Road, added: “I feel safe walking the streets and have no fear even after dark however I would like to see more police officers patrolling Bishops Park and the surrounding streets to deal with the theft from cars and the issue of anti-social behaviour.”
In Shepherds Bush wards crime has dropped from 9,562 in 2010-11 to 7,775 in 2014-15.
The biggest drops have been in burglary (cut by 41 per cent), theft from a person (by 34 per cent), theft from motor vehicles (by 31 per cent) and theft of motor vehicles (by 15 per cent).
The roadshows were run by the Hammersmith & Fulham Safer Neighbourhood Board which holds the local police to account.
The board’s chairman David Millar and chief superintendent Gideon Springer, the Met’s borough commander for Hammersmith & Fulham, gave speeches and took questions from the public at all three events.