Nottinghamshire's Police and Crime Commissioner has joined rural campaigners to launch a £250,000 grant scheme to give community organisations the power to take control of public safety
Firefighters, police officers and members of the National Farmers’ Union joined Nottinghamshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner Paddy Tipping to unveiled details of his latest Community Safety Fund.
The PCC is keen to strengthen links with the rural community and support prevention work which addresses rural issues including agricultural theft, crop damage, animal cruelty, metal theft and hare coursing and poaching.
Through his fund, the Commissioner will allocate grants of up to £25,000 to community-based and third sector organisations which support his Police and Crime Plan pledges and help to break the cycle of crime.
Speaking after the launch, Paddy Tipping said: “Crime has a significant financial and emotional impact on rural businesses and residents. It’s imperative we protect local livelihoods to keep people in jobs and to support the rural economy.
“Antisocial behaviour is also top of the agenda in many rural communities as well as speeding and other road safety concerns. We’re working very hard to deliver a more robust response to the needs of our rural residents and I would welcome applications from partnership schemes or rural-based projects which tackle some of the problems at source and help to promote reassurance and safety.
“Prevention is key and sharing resources and intelligence across multiple organisations will help us to deliver a better deal to those who live in the countryside.”
Andy Guy, Nottinghamshire’s county advisor for the NFU, added: “Much of Nottinghamshire is rural and faces a different criminal threat than urban parts of the county. The loss to farmers from stolen machinery and equipment runs into millions of pounds every year and threatens their survival which has serious implications for the economy.
“Then we have problems with those who come onto private land with quad bikes and 4x4s causing significant and costly damage – often accompanied by threatening behaviour when asked to leave. We think we can enhance the work we are doing with the police to address some of these issues and hope that robust prevention and enforcement work as well as better information-sharing systems will have a positive impact on crime rates in the future as well as help to make local people feel safer.”
The Commissioner’s 2017/18 fund, which will be available for projects commencing from April 2017 onwards, offers grassroots groups and third sector organisations the opportunity to apply for funding to fight crime.
As well as supporting rural initiatives, the PCC is also interested in hearing from projects which promote community cohesion and address hate crime and those which raise awareness of the risks of new psychoactive substances and class A drugs among vulnerable young people.
He has also prioritised preventative education on digital and cybercrime including fraud, computer misuse and online abuse and partnership work within Nottingham to tackle knife crime.
More information and grant application forms are available online at www.nottinghamshire.pcc.police.uk. The deadline for electronic and hard copy applications is midday on Tuesday, January 31 2017.