Meet the woman tasked with cleaning up Broadmead and Bristol city centre

A police cordon around the scene of a stabbing on Bond Street in Bristol city centre with, inset, Carmen Ceesay, the new manager of the Bristol City Centre business crime reduction partnership
-Credit: (Image: BCRD/Bristol Post)


Shops, offices, bars, restaurants and businesses in Bristol city centre have got together to employ a new crime reduction manager tasked with tackling crime, anti-social behaviour and disorder from Cabot Circus and Broadmead to the Old City, Redcliffe and Temple Meads.

The woman given the job is Carmen Ceesay, the new manager for Bristol’s ‘business crime reduction partnership’ (BCRP), and her job will be trying to co-ordinate police, council and businesses in a wide area of the city centre to reduce the amount of issues caused by crime.

The task is a challenging one - the area around Cabot Circus, Broadmead and Bond Street has seen a number of serious incidents in recent months, along with an increase in rough sleepers, and people with drug, drink and addiction issues.

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Ms Ceesay said the answer was to beef up the technology and communication between all those involved in trying to keep the streets of the city centre safe - police, council officials and business owners.

The Business Crime Reduction Partnership that Ms Ceesay now leads, is funded by the three Business Improvement Districts which cover Broadmead, the city centre and Redcliffe & Temple BIDs, in collaboration with police and council chiefs.

It was founded by Broadmead BID team 17 years ago, with the rest of the city centre joining in 2019 and Redcliffe & Temple joining four years ago, along with the city centre’s two main shopping centres, Cabot Circus and The Galleries.

The aim is to ‘collaboratively address crime and safety concerns across central Bristol’. “The collaboration between BCRP and the BIDs has been pivotal in creating a cohesive approach to crime reduction. Through initiatives like the DiSC (Database & Intranet for Safer Communities) system, the partnership has enabled all parties to record and view incidents of anti-social behaviour and crime, share intelligence of known suspects and access summaries of all submitted incidents throughout the areas covered,” a spokesperson for the partnership said.

Carmen Ceesay, the new manager of the Bristol Crime Reduction Partnership
Carmen Ceesay, the new manager of the Bristol Crime Reduction Partnership -Credit:BCRP

“This system has been crucial in implementing a seamless response to criminal activity and tackling repeat offenders across Bristol.

“In addition to the DiSC system, the BCRP has linked the radio systems of all BIDs, ensuring seamless communication. This integrated radio network facilitates swift and reliable communication between members, enhancing their ability to support one another and maintain a rapid response to emerging issues.

“The radios also provide direct contact with the police and connect to an operations centre equipped with 24-hour live CCTV footage, further bolstering the safety infrastructure,” she added.

Ms Ceesay said improving and enhancing that technology was one way to make the city centre safer. “It’s fantastic to be joining the BID’s as the new BCRP manager and I can’t wait to begin working with businesses, Bristol City Council and Avon and Somerset Police on enhancing the safety and security of our business districts,” she said.

“By leveraging technology and strengthening partnerships within the area, we can continue to make a significant impact on reducing crime whilst supporting our members,” she added.

The head of Broadmead’s business community Vivienne Kennedy said creating a ‘safer space’ in the shopping area was the aim.

“The partnership between the BIDs and BCRP is one that continues to bring a positive change to Bristol,” she said. “To be able to bring all parties together to create a safer space is something that Broadmead BID are proud to be involved in and we can’t wait to see the direction Carmen’s appointment takes us in,” she added.

Broadmead is seeing lots of change as shopping habits evolve -Credit:John Myers
Broadmead is seeing lots of change as shopping habits evolve -Credit:John Myers

Steve Bluff is the head of the Redcliffe & Temple’s business improvement district. “Safety in Bristol is a crucial part of the work and our ethos at the BIDs and ensuring that our businesses and visitors alike feel safe when in our city centre is an initiative we strive to uphold,” he said.

“Our work with the BCRP continues to make sure this is implemented and to a high standard and I’m looking forward to expanding on the work we already do,” he added.