CCTV installed in Breckland

BRECKLAND'S market towns will soon be covered by one of the most advanced CCTV systems in the country.

BRECKLAND'S market towns will soon be covered by one of the most advanced CCTV systems in the country.

Officers behind the �3.5m Breckland scheme say the state-of-the-art digital network will also have the scope to be used in rural areas to tackle crime and make people feel safer.

And it will have the capacity for businesses and homeowners to link up their own cameras to it.

More than 60 digital dome cameras are being installed at locations in Thetford (24 cameras), Watton (seven) Swaffham (10), Dereham (11) and Attleborough (nine) and is replacing the 15-year-old analogue system.

There are also some “rapid reployment” cameras which can be re-located if there are troublespots, including outlying villages.

It is a wireless system - operated from a control room in Thetford - and will provide high quality pictures, which are so much more reliable as court evidence.

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Breckland Council has signed a 10-year partnership with Advance Monitoring Solutions and Axis Communications for the network, which will be fully operational by March 31.

Breckland's community safety officer Grahame Green said: “For the district to get something of this magnitude is quite phenomenal. It is going to be the most sophisticated in the country.

“This is a deterrent and it is not just about catching people. The images will be much crisper and sharper. It is a system for the community which we want the community to be involved in.”

Cabinet member Theresa Hewitt said: “We are confident that the Axis cameras will make a major contribution towards improving safety and helping to reduce crime and anti social behaviour in Breckland.”

The cameras - which can turn 450 degrees in a second - can work on very low lighting levels and can get infra red back up.

Police can get remote access to monitor pictures, whereas at the moment they would have to drive to the control room at Thetford.

Other features are loud speakers which will allow control room staff to give messages to people in the area and there is also the chance for people to text in messages to the control room.

The locations where the cameras will be are:

*THETFORD - White Hart Street, King Street (bank), Market Place, Guildhall Street, Well Street, Bridge Street car park, King Street (WH Smith), St Giles Lane car park, School Lane car park, Tanner Street, Argos, Link car park, Cage Lane, Pike Lane car park, Breckland House car park (two cameras), York Way, Canon's Walk, Pine Close and Bridge Street. There are also four cameras at the control room.

*DEREHAM - Cherry Tree car park central, Cherry Tree car park north, Market Place, Quebec Street, Church Street (east), Church Street (west), council office car park, High Street, Norwich Street, Cowper Road and Nelson Place.

*ATTLEBOROUGH - Queen's Square, Queen's Square car park (east), Queen's Square car park (west), Church Street, Sainsbury's car park, High Street, Exchange Street, Connaught Hall and Station Road.

*SWAFFHAM - Station Yard car park, Market Place (south), Market Place (north), Cley Road, Shambles, Shambles car park, Theatre Street car park, Ecotech (rear), Turbine Way (north) and Turbine Way (south).

*WATTON - Middle Street. High Street (health centre), High Street (Londis), High Street, Somerfields, Harvey Street and High Street (shops).