Yeovil Wins BCRP award

A town centre crime reduction partnership which not only responds to urgent incidents but also seeks to help the people who cause them, has received an award from Police Crime Prevention Initiatives (PCPI), which works alongside the Police Service to encourage and deliver safer communities.

The Yeovil Crime Reduction Team (YCRT) has focused on getting to know and understand the individuals who come to their attention and signpost them to a wide range of support agencies – that can help in a variety of ways, such as by providing shelter, medical treatment, counselling and even food and clothes.

The aim is to break their cycle of repeat offending and to try to tackle their underlying issues, which could include mental health, drug abuse, homelessness, difficulties with welfare benefits, domestic violence or a number of these or other issues.

The team’s pioneering work has been so effective that it led to an 11% reduction in crime in Yeovil town centre during 2018.

The scheme’s co-ordinator is Gareth Williams, who joined YCRT four years ago with a brief which included operating the radio link with member businesses like shops and pubs and run the exclusion scheme to prevent and reduce crime.

However, Gareth quickly saw the huge potential in the organisation and build on what he was given and adopt a new approach to change the lives of people caught up in crime, anti-social behaviour and social exclusion. He grew the membership, increased communication between members and other organisations, and breathed new life into the organisation’s ‘inactive’ offender monitoring database.

Against a background of austerity and huge demand on limited police and council resources, the YCRT became a key player in the Yeovil One Team, which was set up as a Police & Crime Commissioner initiative to act as a multi-agency hub bringing key organisations together to share information and provide the fullest possible overview of people with safeguarding needs.

For the YCRT, this proved to be a springboard to provide an early intervention and triage service by working with a wide range of organisations that were well-placed to provide support to individuals who needed urgent help.

In March 2019, YCRT’s hard work was rewarded with a ‘Business Crime Reduction Partnership’ Award based on a set of standards owned by the National Business Crime Centre (NBCC).

Receiving the award, Gareth said: “I am passionate about wanting to make Yeovil a better and safer place for people to come during the day and evening. All the organisations that we work with are all working to this goal. It’s very much an award for the team.”

Presenting the award, Guy Collyer, who has oversight of the BCRP accreditation for PCPI, said: “It’s not only commendable what you have achieved, but also incredible. What you see from the media is that the Police Service can’t do it alone. It needs the help of BCRPs. So thank you for that and big congratulations.”

Matt Powell from Revive and Thrive added, “We are incredibly pleased that the new standards for accreditation have been launched with such an outstanding example of what business crime reduction partnerships can achieve. Yeovil is setting a standard that other BCRPs should be aspiring to and Revive & Thrive is proud to have assessed this, the first of many partnerships which will go on to receive this award.”

BCRPs are required to demonstrate good practice and professionalism by ensuring they are functioning in an ethical manner and within the law. The criteria cover membership agreements, data security and compliance with current legislation. There are two assessing organisations working with the NBCC that have been authorised to carry out assessment

A town centre crime reduction partnership, which responds to incidents like shoplifting and anti-social behaviour and helps the people who cause them, has received an award from Police Crime Prevention Initiatives (PCPI), which works alongside the Police Service to encourage and deliver safer communities.

The Yeovil Crime Reduction Team (YCRT) has radio links to its members, like shops and pubs, runs the exclusion scheme and works closely with the police CCTV control room to keep the town centre safe.

However, the YCRT is committed to getting to know and understanding the individuals who come to their attention so they can be signposted to a wide range of support agencies that offer practical support such as shelter, medical treatment, counselling and even food and clothes.

The aim is to break the cycle of repeat offending and social exclusion and to try to tackle the underlying issues. These could be mental health, drug abuse, homelessness, difficulties with welfare benefits, domestic violence or a number of these, or other issues.

The team’s pioneering work has been so effective that it led to an 11% reduction in crime in Yeovil town centre during 2017.

The scheme’s co-ordinator Gareth Williams joined YCRT four years ago and set about growing the membership, increasing communication between members and breathing new life into the organisation’s ‘inactive’ offender monitoring database.

The YCRT’s new approach offering early intervention and triage services started in earnest after it became involved with the Yeovil One Team, which was set up as a Police & Crime Commissioner initiative to be a multi-agency hub, bringing together key organisations to share information about individuals with safeguarding needs.

In March 2019, YCRT’s hard work was rewarded with a ‘Business Crime Reduction Partnership’ Award from Police Crime Prevention Initiatives, the BCRP accreditation body, which runs a number of crime prevention initiatives to deter and reduce crime.

BCRPs are required to demonstrate good practice and professionalism by ensuring they are functioning in an ethical manner and within the law. The criteria cover membership agreements, data security and compliance with current legislation. Yeovil’s assessment was carried out by Revive & Thrive, one of two national organisations authorised to carry out this work.

Receiving the award, Gareth said: “I am passionate about wanting to make Yeovil a better and safer place for people to come during the day and evening. All the organisations that we work with are working towards this goal. It’s very much an award for the team.”

Presenting the award, Guy Collyer, who has oversight of the BCRP accreditation for PCPI, said: “It’s not only commendable what you have achieved, but also it’s incredible. What you see from the media is that the Police Service cannot do it alone. It needs the help of BCRPs.”

Matt Powell, Director, of Revive & Thrive, said: “We are incredibly pleased that the new standards for accreditation have been launched with such an outstanding example of what Business Crime Reduction Partnerships can achieve. Yeovil is setting a standard that other BCRPs should be aspiring to and Revive & Thrive is proud to have assessed this, the first of many partnerships which will go on to receive this award.”

PCPI is best known by its most successful initiative, Secured by Design (SBD), which seeks to incorporate crime prevention measures and techniques into the physical security of new developments. More than one million homes have been built to SBD’s policing standards with reductions in crime of up to 87% every year.

s leading to accreditation. They are Revive & Thrive and the National Association of Business Crime Partnerships.

PCPI is best known by its most successful initiative, Secured by Design (SBD), which seeks to incorporate crime prevention measures and techniques into the physical security of new developments. More than one million homes have been built to SBD’s policing standards with reductions in crime of up to 87% every year. PCPI is to due take over the running of the NBCC from 1st April 2019.