Your latest Blog from your local Inspector, Aled George, who covers the Blackwood and Risca areas
This blog marks the end of my first calendar year as your local policing inspector for Blackwood and Risca.
I would like to thank everyone from these areas, including elected representatives, local businesses and other organisations, for their welcome and support.
My officers and police staff also deserve recognition and thanks for their hard work.
Last summer you nominated four key priorities for the neighbourhood policing team to work on, alongside the many thousands of incidents the local policing team attend and investigate each year. These were:
Anti-social behaviour in and around Blackwood
As in previous years, anti-social behaviour and vandalism were an issue in and around Blackwood, particularly at the bus station.
Together with the town and county councils and transport operators, our shared aim is to make the area less appealing for those who want to congregate and cause issues.
We have taken a problem-solving approach to tackle the problem, such as working with partners to increase diversionary activity and working with schools to address vulnerability concerns.
Police have undertaken regular patrols in hotspot areas and enforced dispersal orders when required. We have brought enforcement action against a number of individuals and this approach will continue into the new year.
We will be using the same methods to address similar longstanding issues in and around Cefn Fforest, following the success of our partnership work in Blackwood.
Anti-social behaviour in and around Newbridge
We have increased patrols at key times in order to issues identified around McDonalds, the Calzaghe Bridge and the town centre.
Some people who are causing these problems travel via rail to Newbridge, so the support from British Transport Police has been most appreciated.
In the new year we will be doing further work with partner agencies and other interested parties to make the areas less attractive for those wishing to come to Newbridge and cause trouble.
Our plan also involves engaging with parents and young people particularly to make them aware of some of the risks they are being exposed to.
Shoplifting has wider repercussions than just the instant effect to businesses, as it is often used to fuel drug habits.
We have tackled shoplifting alongside many ongoing warrants and investigations this year. This has had a notable impact in disrupting the supply of drugs to some parts of our communities.
Our arrests have led many successful convictions for this crime through targeted, undercover and visible operations.
In 2020 we want to improve our reporting system to help identify suspects and ensure the relevant information is acted on promptly.
We want to make it more difficult for shoplifters to operate in our area, so we will reach out to local businesses and town councils on how we can share information about known offenders.
Illegal off-road biking causes a number of issues: noise disruption, danger to road users, damage to land, disruption to farmers, and generally spoils this beautiful area for those who live here or visit it.
Significant work has already taken place with landowners, residents, elected representatives and agencies to undertake joint-patrols and to install barriers.
The ‘Your Voice’ voting process will re-open in January and this is an opportunity for members of the public to let us know what the policing priorities are for your area.
Keep an eye on our Twitter accounts – @gpriscateam and @gpblackwood – to find out how to submit your ‘Your Voice’ priorities for the coming year.
We also regularly post updates on Twitter but you can also email me any policing issues in our area via [email protected].
Finally, I would like to wish everyone all the very best for the year ahead.