Westminster reveals plans to shut down CCTV

 

Westminster Council has announced plans to decommission its CCTV operation from 1 September this year unless a ‘responsible partner’ comes forward to help fund the system.

The local authority is set to vote on the matter on 6 June, in attempts to save £1m a year in revenue on future contracts and £1.68m of capital expenditure earmarked to support the delivery of a new CCTV estate.

A cabinet report reveals that the council has approached the police, the former London mayor Boris Johnson and local businesses to help finance the system but both the mayor and the police refused.

”Local
Westminster cannot 'subsidise police' over CCTV

Business would only stump up cash if the CCTV system was ‘directly targeted at reducing the cost of crime to their business and possibly linked to additional or dedicated police resource’.

Council officers state: ‘Extensive engagement with partners over recent years on the future viability of the CCTV system has not led to any meaningful financial support, leaving the council with the full financial burden which it can no longer continue to bear.’

In even stronger terms, the council report states: ‘The council can no longer afford to directly subsidise partners which benefit from the existence of a CCTV service, most notably the Metropolitan Police.’

It also reveals that the cost of decommissioning the service has been estimated at £300,000 and world cover the removal and disposal of the equipment and infrastructure, for which there is no re-sale value as they are beyond their economic useful life.

A council spokesman said: 'It is important to note that no decision has yet been taken about the future operation of the council’s CCTV network in Westminster. However, like many other local authorities around the country, our current view is that we do not feel we are able to continue to subsidise this non statutory service which will cost us £1m per year to run, when there are many other pressures on our budgets.

'However, we would also add that there many other cameras operational in central London that would not be affected by any council decision, for example those operated by Transport for London and thousands operated by private businesses. The CCTV systems operating in our housing estates will also be unaffected. It is also important to note that there are many other crime prevention initiatives that are run successfully, often in partnership, from the police, council and businesses that do not involve fixed CCTV cameras. We will continue to build on those processes.'

The council has no statutory duty to provide CCTV services, however under section 17 of the Crime and Disorder Act 1998, it does have a general responsibility to do all it reasonably can to prevent crime and disorder.

However, Westminster cites research that suggests CCTV does little to prevent crime despite its obvious importance in reactively catching suspects, and so argues it is ‘reasonable to suggest that this decision does not involve a breach of the council’s statutory responsibilities’.

There were 7,029 incidents captured by Westminster CCTV last year, an average of 586 per month (with the summer months having higher numbers of incidents recorded).

These incidents were predominantly captured reactively (91% of incidents) and contributed to 1,313 arrests (109 per month). 

 

Also see

Register now for full access


Register just once to get unrestricted, real-time coverage of the issues and challenges facing UK transport and highways engineers.

Full website content includes the latest news, exclusive commentary from leading industry figures and detailed topical analysis of the highways, transportation, environment and place-shaping sectors. Use the link below to register your details for full, free access.

Already a registered? Login

 
comments powered by Disqus
 
 
highways jobs

Environment Officer

Kirklees Metropolitan Council
£29,909 – £32,233 Grade 11 - £33,136 - £35,229
All Environment Officers lead, project manage and/or co-ordinate large environmental projects... Huddersfield, West Yorkshire
Recuriter: Kirklees Metropolitan Council

MCA Hub Co-ordinator

Camden London Borough Council
£40,028 - £46,431
You will lead on the co-ordination of the North and Central Area Mayor’s Construction Academy (MCA) Hub. London (Greater)
Recuriter: Camden London Borough Council

Highways Estimator

Ringway
Competitive Salary
As the Highways Estimator you will join a busy environment and become an integral part of the team. Hounslow (London Borough), London (Greater)
Recuriter: Ringway

County Highways Manager

Lincolnshire County Council
£55,503 - £60,578
Seeking a highly motivated leader and an excellent communicator, who has a proven ability to build relationships and trust, leading by example. Lincolnshire
Recuriter: Lincolnshire County Council

Local Highways Manager (East) - Lincolnshire County Council

Lincolnshire County Council
G12 £43,662 - £50,430
Seeking someone who combines excellent technical knowledge with a dedication to the customer. Lincolnshire
Recuriter: Lincolnshire County Council

Assistant Director (Planning, Regeneration & Transport)

Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council
£87,791 per annum  
This is an exciting time to join Rotherham and make a real difference. We are looking for an outstanding Assistant Director who will bring... Rotherham, South Yorkshire
Recuriter: Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council

Corporate Director

Islington London Borough Council
Up to £135k
You will share our values and be passionate about helping us shape the Islington of the future. Islington, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Islington London Borough Council

Assistant Engineer

Cambridgeshire County Council
£21,074 - £30,756
Looking for strong team players interested in working with a variety of professional and community partners across Cambridgeshire. Cambridgeshire
Recuriter: Cambridgeshire County Council

Junior Energy Manager Apprentice

Brent Council
£15,000 p.a. inc.
The right person for this job will be pro-active and innovative in finding a way forward. Wembley, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Brent Council

Career Grade Drainage Engineer

Swindon Borough Council
£19,092 to £40,680 p.a
Working in the asset management team, you’ll support the work of the Lead Local Flood Authority (LLFA) and Highways Authority. Swindon, Wiltshire
Recuriter: Swindon Borough Council

Highway Construction Project Manager

Brent Council
£50,442 - £53,526 p.a. inc.
We are looking for an accomplished highway construction project manager to support the delivery of two high priority highway schemes. Brent, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Brent Council

Traffic Signals & UTMC Manager

Bristol City Council
£42,683 - £45,591
Looking for someone with proven management experience, enthusiasm, creativity, vision and good communication skills. City of Bristol
Recuriter: Bristol City Council

Principal Highways Project Engineer

Knowsley Metropolitan Borough Council
£34,106 - £35,229 per annum
The post holder will be responsible for project managing the delivery of two highway projects on the Key Route Network. Knowsley (Metropolitan borough), Merseyside
Recuriter: Knowsley Metropolitan Borough Council

Traffic Schemes Officer

Oxfordshire County Council
£22,021 - £29,636 per annum
An exciting opportunity has arisen to play a central role with the Traffic Team in the maintenance of the highway network... Kidlington, Oxfordshire
Recuriter: Oxfordshire County Council

Traffic Engineer

Telford & Wrekin Council
£29,055 to £30,756
This is an exciting opportunity to join Telford & Wrekin Council’s Traffic Management Team! Telford, Shropshire
Recuriter: Telford & Wrekin Council

Assistant Engineer – Traffic Regulation

Telford & Wrekin Council
£23,866 to £25,463
This is an exciting opportunity to join Telford & Wrekin Council’s Traffic Management Team. Telford, Shropshire
Recuriter: Telford & Wrekin Council

Highways Quantity Surveyor

Leicester City Council
£30,756 - £33,136 pro-rata per annum
Working in the Highways Maintenance Group, you will be responsible for the operational highway maintenance activities Leicester, Leicestershire
Recuriter: Leicester City Council

Highways Engineer/Inspector

Royal Borough of Greenwich
£22956 - £32637 per annum
Highways Engineer/Inspector - PermanentThere are plenty of reasons to take a closer look at Royal Greenwich.Royal Greenwich is undergoing a huge trans England, London, Woolwich
Recuriter: Royal Borough of Greenwich

Engineer - Bridges

Cambridgeshire County Council
£32,825 - £35,401
We have a vacancy for a Structures Engineer working within the Bridge’s team! Cambridgeshire
Recuriter: Cambridgeshire County Council

Engineer

Cambridgeshire County Council
£32,825 - £35,401
You will be required to lead the delivery of a wide range of highway improvements and maintenance projects... Cambridgeshire
Recuriter: Cambridgeshire County Council