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DOCO of the Year

A Designing Out Crime Officer (DOCO) of the Year award has gone to Leslie Gipps, of the Metropolitan Police. Leslie, pictured centre, was behind the refurbishment of the SBD (Secured by Design) Garden at Capel Manor College, in Enfield, Essex, which then led to a competition among the college’s garden design students, with the winning entry being shown at the RHS Hampton Court Flower Show.

The garden not only attracted a visit from TV presenter and gardener Alan Titchmarsh but also gained publicity, including in the Times newspaper with headlines including ‘Police help create a burglar-beating garden’ and ‘Anti-crime garden is a thorn in burglars’ side’. The garden went on to receive a Royal Horticultural Society Silver Medal, awarded to the two winning design students.

Leslie worked on bringing the Metropolitan Police and SBD to the Ideal Home Show at Olympia London, where the Future Living Home in the show’s central mini-village was due to show crime prevention measures and techniques. Leslie’s commitment to crime prevention and designing out crime drew DOCO of the Year nominations from several individuals and one SBD member company – Premier Security and Fire Consultants, of Ilford, Essex, which produces steel doorsets, gates and screens.

Premier praised Leslie for using his ‘incredible level of expertise and hard work’ as a DOCO to engage with designers, construction companies and manufacturers to emphasise SBD as an initiative the building industry has to reduce crime. On Leslie’s advice, Premier designed, made, tested and produced a fire-switch protection unit, which was regarded as an improvement on designs, and has been installed by several London boroughs in their multi-occupancy buildings.

“That level of co-operation is both refreshing and rewarding as we all strive to be the best we can be,” said Premier.

Leslie was presented with his award by Stephen Watson QPM, National Police Chiefs’ Council (NPCC) Lead for Crime Prevention, pictured right; and Helen Ball, Assistant Commissioner (Professionalism), at the Met, pictured left, at SBD’s ATLAS national training event for DOCOs.

Leslie said: “I’m taken aback and very honoured to receive this award but would not have been able to achieve it without the continued help and support of the Met’s North East DOCO Unit. I’m very passionate about SBD and crime prevention. It’s a pro-active side of policing that has benefits for current and future generations.”

Inspector Matt Turner, of the Met Police, said: “Leslie is a really good guy with a wealth of knowledge and expertise. The award is well deserved. Leslie does his day job and delivers to a really high standard but also goes above and beyond to deliver additional projects and overcomes any obstacles along the way.”


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