Dr Billings Welcomes ‘Safer Streets Fund’ Grants

Two bids for government funding by Dr Alan Billings, the South Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner, on behalf of three local authorities, the police and local communities, have been accepted by the government.

The funding is intended to make streets safer through projects to crack down on neighbourhood crimes such as burglary, theft of and from vehicles and robbery.

South Yorkshire is to receive a total of £850,000 from the £18.3m Safer Streets Fund. This represents an award of £432,000 for Sheffield and £418,000 for the Dearne Valley.

Putting the bids together involved four local authorities – Barnsley, Doncaster, Rotherham and Sheffield – as well as South Yorkshire Police and the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner working in collaboration. The bids were then submitted to the home office by the PCC.

The delivery of the schemes will be done in partnership between the local authorities and South Yorkshire Police.

Dr Billings said: “I welcome this funding. It will help us to do two things.

“First we will be better able to prevent crime and second, where crimes and serious anti-social behaviour have been committed, it will help to bring the offenders to justice.

“These crimes – burglaries, vehicle thefts and robbery, are those that cause most distress in communities.”

In Sheffield, the funding will be used in the Eccelsall Road/Sharrow area to increase CCTV and ANPR (number plate recognition) coverage and for home security schemes to make properties safer. The latter will also include houses in multiple occupation, such as student houses.

There is also funding for the police to engage with communities to show how homes can be made more secure, including through the use of smart water.

In the Dearne Valley the funding will be used to increase CCTV and ANPR coverage and to engage with householders to help them make their homes safer, including using smart water.

Dr Billings said: “The bid for money for the Dearne followed a number of meetings I attended last year called by Stephanie Peacock MP and John Healey MP, with local residents concerned about crime and anti-social behaviour.”

The bids require the police and local authorities to collaborate to produce proposals that are fully costed and can be evaluated for their effectiveness.

Dr Billings said: “These successful bids involved a great deal of work putting together the different proposals.

“I would like to thank those in my office, in the police and in the local authorities – Sheffield, Doncaster, Rotherham and Barnsley – who worked together, at speed and under great pressure to achieve this excellent result.

“This is the latest of a series of successful bids for funding that we have made during this year of the pandemic.”