The South Worcestershire Safer Streets project will redesign public places to be more welcoming with a view to improving the perception of the areas and improving safety for women and girls but also for the wider community. In addition to the physical measures, there will be a series of educational inputs for a wider audience.
The combination of all of these interventions will increase education and awareness about the issue of violence against women and girls and will support the prevention of anti-social behaviour (ASB), Public Order offences, other violent crime and retail crime.
Investment for the project work was secured through the Government’s Safer Streets Fund following a successful bid endorsed by West Mercia Police and Crime Commissioner, John Campion.
Nearly half of the total £1 million secured for projects in West Mercia has been invested by West Mercia Police and local partners in the South Worcestershire Project to make our public spaces safer.
- School sessions for 11–18-year-olds.
- Sessions for university students
- Guardian Bystander programme workshops to staff within the Night-Time Economy hospitality and retail industry.
The term ‘night-time economy’ is used to describe a wide range of activities from a trip to the theatre or a family meal to a night out at a club. Night-time economies are an important part of our towns and cities and are estimated to bring in over £60 billion to the UK economy every year. The vast majority of people enjoy a night out safely and sensibly. We will be working with the nighttime economy to tackle sexual violence and harassment and victim-blaming attitudes.
The project has been improving lighting to aid natural surveillance in key areas, further reducing both crime and the fear of crime by making paths and alleyways more user-friendly.
Funding has been used to install CCTV cameras in areas that are more vulnerable including additional and mobile CCTV cameras monitored 24/7.
The Canal and Rivers Trust have carried out landscaping and maintenance to improve the look, feel, and visibility for people using entrances onto the canals. The project funding has also been used to install new, clear signage for safety messages.
It is hoped that the combination of all of these interventions will address concerns raised by members of the public, will increase education and awareness, and will support the community.
The South Worcestershire area encompasses three local authority districts.
- Worcester City is a mixture of urban and suburban residential areas. It is the most densely populated district within South Worcestershire. The University of Worcester is located in various campuses around the city and has a high ratio of female students of 69.1%.
- Wychavon district consists of towns such as Pershore, Evesham, and Droitwich.
- Malvern Hills district consists of towns such as Upton-Upon-Severn, Tenbury Wells, Kempsey, and Great Malvern.
- West Mercia Police
- West Mercia Rape and Sexual Abuse Centre *
- University of Worcester
- Worcestershire Street Pastors
- Worcestershire Youth Engagement Team
- Worcester City Council
- Worcester Business Improvement District
- Wychavon District Council
- Malvern Hills District Council
- Worcester Regulatory Services
- Worcestershire High Sheriff’s Office
- Canal and River Trust
- Worcester Acute Hospital Trust
*Purple Leaf is a trading name of West Mercia Rape and Sexual Abuse Support Centre (WMRSASC). WMRSASC has been supporting survivors of all types of sexual abuse and sexual violence for over 35 years and provides a range of services including advocacy, therapy, online and a helpline service.
Purple Leaf is a team of specialist sexual violence counsellors, advocates and support workers who come from a range of backgrounds including social work, counselling, play therapy, youth offending and the police.