New CCTV cameras for Surrey's 'most dangerous' town in bid to deter criminals

One of Surrey’s most crime ridden areas is to get new CCTV cameras in an effort to stamp out antisocial and violent behaviour. The new lenses will go up this week in five spots across Walton - dubbed the “most dangerous” town in Surrey by the website crimerate.co.uk.

The mobile CCTV cameras, paid for by the Home Office’s Safer Streets fund, will go up in Ashley Park, Cowey Sale, Ambleside Avenue, Hepworth Way, and Drewitts Court Car Park. According to official police figures there were 214 reported crimes in Walton Central with 51 reports of violent or sexual offences for the first three months of this year.

Data from April onwards has yet to be published. According to crimerate.co.uk there were 109 crimes per 1,000 people in Walton last year. This, it says “compares poorly” to Surrey's overall crime rate and comes in at more than 76 per cent higher than the Surrey rate of 62 per 1,000 daytime population.

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In February 2024, Walton also had the highest rate of reported bicycle theft in Surrey with seven crimes reported. The total grant to Elmbridge Borough Council will be £273,000, part of which will also pay for outreach programmes and security measures in the Drewitts Court car park.

This is expected to include speed bumps, anti-graffiti and urine paint and improved lighting. The council also wants to make improvements to the St John’s estate community garden. Councillor Kirsty Hewens, portfolio holder for enterprise, parking and local economy, said: “We want our residents and visitors to not only feel safe in Elmbridge but to take pride in our towns, parks and green spaces.

“Having these mobile cameras will act as a deterrent against street drinking, littering and illegal parking, allowing everyone to enjoy our borough.” The council hopes the cameras will not only to curb rowdy behaviour, illegal parking and street drinking, but also to provide video evidence for Surrey Police, Surrey County Council and the Elmbridge Borough Council environmental enforcement team.

The installation follows the recent Public Spaces Protection Order extension. Police and Crime Commissioner Lisa Townsend said: “Safer Streets is a fantastic initiative that is making a real difference to the lives of residents in Walton. Since I was first elected as Surrey’s Commissioner, I have spoken with thousands of residents and listened to their thoughts about policing in their communities.

"I know that anti-social behaviour and neighbourhood crime are key issues for those who live in Walton, and this funding allows us to tackle some of these issues head-on.”

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