What are we doing?
Between Monday 20th March 2023 and Monday 17th April 2023 a month of increased police activity will commence within Torquay. The intention is for a pro-active policing response targeting key issues, such as Anti-Social Behaviour, Drug and Alcohol use, shoplifting and violence within specific localities of Torquay, such as, Castle Circus, Fleet Street, Union Street, Melville Street, Victoria Parade, and some surrounding areas. The operation will involve the use local and force resources, being led by Torquay Neighbourhood Team to provide high visibility policing presence to tackle the key issues and report on what we have done and achieved.
Why are we doing it?
To maximise the safety and improve the confidence of members of the public by reducing drug and alcohol offending, shoplifting, violence, and general Anti-Social Behaviour in Torquay Town Centre. There is a public sense of feeling that Torquay Town centre has become a centralised area of illegal drugs, alcohol, shoplifting and Anti-social behaviour. Discussions and feedback from residents and businesses highlighted a shared view with evidence that they have experienced this over a significant period. There are specific areas that are cited locally and, in the media, namely Factory Row, Castle Circus, Fleet walk and Melville Street. These issues have also drawn increased complaints and reports from the community and the police are actively listening and responding to these reports.
How are we doing it? (Not limited to, but including)..
- Increasing officer presence throughout the day, every day, in the right places, at the right time.
- Focusing on street drinking and drug consumption
- Misuse of drugs act warrants
- Licencing checks throughout the town
- Retail surveys and engagement
- Shoplifting patrols
- Use of Anti-Social Behaviour legislation
- Increased legitimate use of stop and search powers
- Targeting anti-social use of the roads, including takeaway delivery drivers
- Using force resources, such as, roads policing, neighbourhood policing teams, prevention department.
- Using citizens in policing such as Police cadets, Special Constabulary
- Partnership operations
What are the next steps?
Following the period of increased activity, there will be a full evaluation and review of the results and key performance indicators, such as, crime reports, calls for service, anti-social behaviour reports, use of police powers and public/business feedback. Using these outcomes, it will enable us to engage further with our partners and have conversations about a sustainable, multi-agency ownership and future management of these issues.
Acting Chief Superintendent Edward Wright