CCTV, lighting and unlocking the gates part of plan to make �1 million play park safer

A WISBECH park which an inspector refused to allow his officers to enter after dark for health and safety reasons is to have lights put in so that police can patrol it.

And the locks will come off the gates, too, since a loophole in the law means someone entering a closed site is committing trespass which is a civil issue rather than a police matter.

Council officials have unveiled lighting and other improvements for the �1 million Waterlees Adventure Playground in a bid to curb anti social behaviour.

Jane Leet, communications and partnership manager for Cambridgeshire County Council, said they have been talking to residents, playground users and police. Detailed plans have been put forward in a planning application.

Central to their proposals has been “options to improve security and reduce anti social behaviour in and around the adventure playground”.

Bright lighting will be used during staffed play sessions in the winter and low intensity ambient lighting will then be on outside of staffed hours.

This, says Ms Leets, will allow better visibility across the site and allow routine police patrols through the site.

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Additionally two CCTV cameras will be installed and monitored by a Fenland Council live feed so that crimes can be responded to immediately.

“To allow for effective policing and monitoring of the cameras we will also be applying for the condition to lock the gates to be removed,” said Ms Leet.

The council needed to ensure police “are able to enter the site easily if a crime or instance of anti social behaviour is reported”.

The county council says that by allowing it to become an open site “this would draw people away from sitting on residents’’ walls”.

* Inspector Andy Sullivan surprised town councillors in January last year by telling them his officers would not patrol the playground after 8pm for health and safety reasons.

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