Feniton Neighbourhood Watch in need of a boost

Resident says co-ordinators have lost face-to-face contact with police.

THE Neighbourhood Watch scheme at Feniton needs revitalising after a breakdown in communication between co-ordinators and PCSOs – Devon and Cornwall Police Authority has heard.

Although co-ordinators are receiving relevant information and warnings from police, they have lost the personal contact that was so highly valued, Feniton resident John Sherlock told a liaison meeting in Honiton last week.

“It was good when it first started, but it has petered out,” Mr Sherlock said.

“We are saving you money, because we are your eyes and ears. It is a shame. It needs revitalising.”

Mr Sherlock said he is concerned that PCSOs based in Honiton are overstretched and may not have the time to regularly meet with Neighbourhood Watch co-ordinators in Feniton.

Inspector Antonia Weeks said she would be happy to put the co-ordinators back in touch with the PCSOs. She reminded Mr Sherlock that co-ordinators have their PCSO’s mobile telephone number and that they can get in touch at any time.

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Mr Sherlock said regular contact was essential for “guidance” to ensure co-ordinators do not “overstep the mark”.

He reminded the meeting of the former Let’s Improve Feniton Together (LIFT) scheme, which brought people together to solve their differences.

He said it saved police time and brought about resolutions. However, when police had been called to Feniton “the response was always 100 per cent”.

Inspector Weeks said LIFT had been overtaken by the Partners and Communities Together (PACT) initiative.