Safer Streets: £1.9m to be spent on extra safety measures in Northumberland and Tyne and Wear

Credit: The package is planned to fund street pastor-style safety volunteer patrols across the Metro network.

Nearly two million pounds has been pledged for local councils and police forces in our region to make public areas safer. 

The Safer Streets project aims to tackle violence against women and girls in the wake of Sarah Everard's murder.

The money will be spent on CCTV, patrol staff on public transport like the Tyne and Wear Metro and more street lighting.

Each force will get the following money:

Northumbria's PCC has already planned two safety packages that they'll spend £800,000 on.

The first safety package will see the Commissioner work with Metro operator Nexus, bus operators and the regional transport board on a £400,000 package including:

  • A new reporting app to transform how all passengers report crime and anti-social behaviour

  • Body-worn cameras for transport staff

  • Street Pastor-style safety volunteers on patrol across the Metro network

  • Extra CCTV linked to control rooms.

 The second safety package sees another £400,000 go towards:

  • New CCTV cameras in parks built into help points fitted in parks, that are linked to CCTV control rooms

  • An independent review of street lighting in the parks selected and recommendations for new street lights were needed

  • Academic research into what makes a safe park, where women and girls will be invited to form a new safety steering group to help design new safety standards for parks across Northumberland, Tyne and Wear.

Investment will go to parks across all six council areas in Northumberland, Tyne and Wear, including Ashington’s Hirst Park, Gateshead’s Saltwell Park and Mowbray Park in Sunderland.

Police Commissioner Kim McGuinness said: “I want Northumberland, Tyne and Wear to have a first-class public transport network in which women and all passengers feel safe to travel. This £800,000 is a vital first step towards that."

Cllr Martin Gannon Gateshead Council leader and chair of the region’s joint transport committee, welcomed the announcement.

 He said: “It is great to see this investment to make public transport safer in the region. We recently set out a roadmap in the 2021 North East Transport Plan to build on the infrastructure in place to achieve a safer and more attractive transport network, which reflects many of the findings from the recent survey.

 “This is a big step towards making people feel safe on our streets so that there is higher take up of walking and cycling, which are the greenest and healthiest forms of travel, as well as public transport use in the region.”

 The funding is part of the Home Office’s Safer Streets funding pot. The scheme divides £25m among bidders across the country, but the funding must be spent by spring 2022.