Councillors advised not to reinstall CCTV in Richmond Market Place

Richmond market place. Photo: Guy Carpenter.

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Council officers are recommending that CCTV is not reinstalled in Richmond Market Place.

A report states that replacing the cameras in the town centre would help police identify offenders.

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However the document which will be discussed by Richmondshire District Councillors next week states that crime rates in the town are relatively low.

It adds: “the crime and antisocial behaviour figures remain comparatively low in this area and the town is recognised as a safe place to live.

“It is difficult therefore to recommend that CCTV would be a proportionate response to the incidents the town experiences.”

Crime data for Richmond Market Place was provided in the report.

This showed:

  • From 2011 to 2016 crime and antisocial behaviour levels in Richmond Market Place have remained relatively static with some fluctuations.
  • Antisocial behaviour accounts for the highest proportion of reported incidents in this location (56%). (c) 43 crimes were recorded in this location in 2016. The most frequently reported crimes were criminal damage – 12% (5 reported incidents) and shoplifting – 12% (5 reported incidents), all of which occurred in King Street, Finkle Street and the Market Place. (d)
  • The number of non-ASB crimes in the area has reduced from 88 in 2011 to 19 in 2016

Looking at the data, It was is difficult to identify a ‘pressing need’ for CCTV and it would appear that CCTV would may be a disproportionate response to the incidents reported, the report noted.

Figures produced by officers advise that it would cost nearly £40,000 to set up the system and almost £30,000 a year to monitor and run the cameras.

Richmond Town Council backs the idea of a new CCTV system in principle but has not discussed any financial contribution.

North Yorkshire Police say they would not be able to contribute, while the MoD initially said it would be able to monitor the cameras for free but has since said this would not be possible.

Richmond Business and Tourism Association has also raised concerns about the cost and not offered to contribute.

Recommending that councillors decide not to redeploy CCTV cameras in Richmond Market Place, the report added: “The lack of affordable monitoring provision would pose a financial challenge disproportionate to the levels of crime reported in the town so from a financial point of view the business case has not been made.”

The report, which will be discussed at a meeting next Wednesday, added that North Yorkshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner was undertaking a county-wide review of CCTV provision with an aim to create a consistent approach to procurement, management and monitoring.

“The council is participating in this review and will continue to do so whatever the outcome of the discussion at Corporate Board,” the report added.