A Neighbourhood Watch information session is to be held after last week’s public meeting with PSNI District Commander Superintendent David Moore was attended by over 60 people.
DUP Cllr and Assembly candidate Carla Lockhart, Sydney Anderson MLA and Cllr Paul Greenfield hosted the meeting following the recent spike in burglaries across the Banbridge Area.
Cllr Lockhart said: “The high volume of people at the public meeting just demonstrates the concern out there. Many in attendance had been subjected to burglaries and had very specific queries for the PSNI.
“Advice was given as to how to secure your property, people were reassured about the level of policing since the changes last year and there was an opportunity for people to call on the PSNI for additional officers to be out on the beat in Banbridge.
“A follow up from the meeting will be a neighbourhood watch advice evening because people have recognised the need for public awareness and the need to report any suspicious activity in the area.
“Neighbourhood watch will I believe go some way to helping people feel safe and secure in their own environment.
“People are worried. The PSNI heard first hand the level of concern and as a result patrols are going up be stepped up in the local area. Together we can tackle this scourge on society and I believe this meeting was the first step in a process.”
Sydney Anderson said: “I have been in regular contact with the PSNI surrounding issues such as break-ins and petrol bomb attacks which have taken place in the Banbridge area in recent weeks and as such it was positive to see the police being able to liaise with local residents on such matters also.
“It was encouraging that members of the public were able to speak freely about these issues of concern with myself, my colleagues and the District Commander. David Moore informed the meeting of how the PSNI were dealing with such criminal activity and he was able to highlight how such activity can be combated as we move forward.
“I am now hopeful that we will be able to assist residents in the setting up of Neighbourhood Watch Schemes in an effort to deal proactively with criminal activity in the area.”