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Street drinking and anti-social behaviour revealed as town’s top issues to tackle

PUBLISHED: 11:56 13 July 2020 | UPDATED: 14:16 13 July 2020

Sgt Simon Stone, STAG chairman Mac MacDonald and PC Paula Gilluley at a previous STAG meeting in January, before the pandemic. Photo: Emily Thomson

Sgt Simon Stone, STAG chairman Mac MacDonald and PC Paula Gilluley at a previous STAG meeting in January, before the pandemic. Photo: Emily Thomson

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Street drinking, speeding and anti-social behaviour are the main issues people say they want to be tackled in their town.

Police spoke to members of the Thetford community at a previous STAG public meeting in January, before the pandemic. Photo: Emily ThomsonPolice spoke to members of the Thetford community at a previous STAG public meeting in January, before the pandemic. Photo: Emily Thomson

More than 300 people took part in Breckland Police’s district-wide online poll to vote for what local issues they feel need the most attention.

In Thetford, 59pc of residents voted on Twitter that street drinking and anti-social behaviour are what they want police to focus on.

These were followed by speeding with 22pc and anti-social behaviour on York Way and Canons Walk with 14pc of votes.

Paula Gilluley, community engagement officer, said: “While recent and current restrictions have meant that we have been unable to meet with our communities for our regular Safer Neighbourhood Action Panel (SNAP), and in Thetford the Safer Thetford Action Group (STAG) meetings, we believe it is important that our community policing priorities remain current and reflect what is important to local residents.

Police spoke to members of the Thetford community at a STAG public meeting in January, before the pandemic. Photo: Emily ThomsonPolice spoke to members of the Thetford community at a STAG public meeting in January, before the pandemic. Photo: Emily Thomson

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“At the end of June and beginning of July we held a week-long poll on Twitter and Next Door across the Breckland District providing our communities with the opportunity to vote for what they would like to see as our next priorities.

“These are temporary priorities and we are still working closely with the Safer Thetford Action Group (STAG) panel and are very much looking forward to when we will be able to attend our usual regular community meetings.”

But Safer Thetford Action Group’s chairman, Mac MacDonald, said residents’ top priorities have remained the same and the group will continue to work closely with local enforcement.

Mr MacDonald said: “As our meetings are not able to go ahead, Breckland Police put out an electronic poll and I think there is value in that going forward,

“Not everyone can always attend meetings so it’s a way to reach a wider audience and find out what public opinion is.

“For Thetford nothing has changed. At the top of the list is anti-social behaviour, second is speeding and antisocial behaviour with vehicles.

“They are all our top priorities and we work with the police as much as we can to help them and the public, it’s a joint effort.”


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