Residents turn crime fighters

Anne Lee pictured in her Neighbourhood Watch area on Pipers Hill Road in Kettering. Anne is encouraging people to sign up to the scheme.
Anne Lee pictured in her Neighbourhood Watch area on Pipers Hill Road in Kettering. Anne is encouraging people to sign up to the scheme.
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Turning off street lights in the county is a major factor behind more residents wanting to set up partnerships with police to protect their communities.

Since the end of September 10 new Neighbourhood Watch schemes have been launched by residents in villages and town streets in the Kettering borough.

They were all started following the turn-off of 66,000 street lights by the county council.

Scheme liason officer Jane Calcott said while the lighting issue was not the sole reason communities joined the scheme, it was a factor.

She said: “I think the turn-off of street lights outside homes has made people think about what they can do to feel safer.

“It is not the only reason why communities launch the schemes, but it is now often mentioned when people speak to me.”

Neighbourhood Watch schemes give residents a chance to communicate with each other and police on crime issues.

There are now 309 in the Kettering borough.

Mrs Calcott said: “Often people may see some unusual behaviour outside their home but don’t think it is suspicious enough to call police. But by using the scheme they can circulate their concern in the neighbourhood and pass it on to police.”

Anne Lee set up a scheme in Pipers Hill Road after her house and a neighbour’s was broken into.

She said: “I’m not surprised more people are joining up since the switch off of street lights – people want to feel safe in their homes and communities.”