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Leeds City Council considers new CCTV cameras for local community

Leeds City Council is looking into new CCTV cameras in the market town of Wetherby to help prevent a very specific form of anti-social behaviour.

Local residents have been complaining about the increase in the amount of dog fouling that has taken place during the past year. A particular blackspot is an area close to the A1, which is affecting people in the nearby local community.

Over the past few years, the Council has worked with people in neighbourhoods across the city to develop tactics to deal with this type of problem. As a result, patrols by enforcement officers have targeted some problem areas. The patrols act as a reminder to the public to clean up after their dogs and to put their litter in bins. Officers can issue an ‘on the spot’ £75 penalty to anyone caught dropping rubbish or failing to pick up after their dog.

The council has been consulting with local residents’ groups in Wetherby about how they can work together to tackle this issue. The local enforcement team are at work on the ground working with the local community. New disposal bins and dispensers for ‘poo-bags’ have been installed along with signs warning of potential fines.

Despite all of this, there are still some challenges. One of the main hurdles is that Wetherby – a satellite town set in a semi-rural location- is more than 10 miles from the city centre. Enforcement officers based in and around Wetherby cover an area that is far larger than their colleagues look after in inner city areas. To incorporate regular patrols – particularly in evenings – to prevent dog fouling in Wetherby, and other outlying areas, would not be cost effective. It would also prevent local enforcement officers from dealing with other issues in their communities. One of the suggestions of how to deal with the issue of dog fouling in Wetherby has been to extend the CCTV network in order to catch perpetrators in action.

icomply has a long history of working in partnership with Leeds City Council. Our V-Tas pro system has already helped to provide a number of solutions for the council’s CCTV team. The area that their centralised control room (which i-comply was a key player in setting up) covers is the second largest of any council in England. Extra cameras in an outlying area such as Wetherby would be ideally suited for our open integration platform that Leeds City Council already uses.

While the Council have not made any decisions about extending the CCTV network in Wetherby sources in the council, have confirmed with local residents that the suggestion is still under consideration.

Watch this space.

John Devine
John Devine
John is an experienced and creative communicator with over 30 years’ experience of working in local government. He has written about a range of subjects, with the main area of his work focussing on social housing and issues affecting the private rented sector. A number of his items have been published at national and local level, and his photographs have featured in newspapers, trade journals and on websites. He is now working as a freelance copy writer and photographer. You can see examples of his work at http://www.jdleeds.co.uk/

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