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Business watch

Some 40 people from Hertfordshire businesses attended an event to launch a ‘Business Watch’ scheme. Set up by PCSO Gavin Wright on the Centennial Business Park in Elstree, the watch will send businesses bespoke crime prevention advice through the Online Watch System (OWL) which sends those signed up alerts via phone, email and fax. PCSO Wright said: “Traditionally the park has been targeted by criminals coming over the border from London to commit crime, such as theft from vehicles, theft of scrap metal and catalytic converters.” 

 

 

The event, held at the Elstree Village De Vere Hotel on March 26, allowed businesses who are signed up to the scheme to hear presentations from the crime prevention officer Colin Claire about security, Borehamwood Station Commander Jay Hounsell from Hertfordshire Fire and Rescue Service about arson and fire prevention, and Valerie Kane, Community Safety Officer at Hertsmere Borough Council, who spoke about the district community safety partnership. Some 48 out of the 68 businesses on the park are now signed up to the scheme.

 

Chief Inspector for Hertsmere, Dean Patient said: “Crimes affecting business can be very specific so having a medium, such as a Business Watch, to communicate really targeted information is invaluable to both them and us.

 

“Whilst crime is reducing across the district we must do all we can to reduce the opportunity for criminals to operate and by arming businesses with relevant and timely crime prevention advice about current crime trends, we can work together to make the business area a hostile place for criminals to operate in.”

 

PCSO Gavin Wright said: “The scheme has been really well received by the businesses. It allows them to have a voice and a forum by which to communicate about crime and security measures. Traditionally the park has been targeted by criminals coming over the border from London to commit crime, such as theft from vehicles, theft of scrap metal and catalytic converters. This scheme enables businesses to be aware of what crimes are happening so they can make informed decisions about their security and look out for anyone acting suspiciously.”

 

Valerie Kane, Community Safety Officer at Hertsmere Borough Council, said: “The aim of Business Watch is quite simply for us to work together to tackle business-related crime in the area.  It was great to see so many local businesses get on board at the launch and I’m sure once it’s up and running, all businesses in the park will sign up.” 


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