Additional Police on patrol, support of a new town centre ‘Police Hub’, new metal detecting wands and high-visibility tabards for night time staff, and a nightlife guide for students – safety and security in Luton town centre has been given a boost thanks to Luton Business Improvement District (BID).
Luton BID has been working closely with Bedfordshire Police, Luton SAFE, Luton Borough Council, LBAC and other partner organisations to drive a number of significant safety and security projects as part of its remit to make the town centre safer and more appealing to visitors, both day and night. The BID has also been heavily involved in the new Police Hub in The Mall, where the Bedfordshire Police team will operate from.
Gabi McKeown BID director, Chair of Luton SAFE and landlord of the Brewery Tap said: “Safety and security is an important element of the BID’s business plan, because these are the issues that continue to be very important to BID businesses. We are proud that through the BID’s continued collaboration with the Police and other agencies, and significant funding of various initiatives, that more projects are evolving to have a positive impact on anti-social behaviour, crime and safety and security in the town centre during the day. It’s all about improving the visitor experience and everyone’s reassurance and feeling of personal safety. Some of the projects we are on board with may not have come about were it not for the BID’s involvement, so we are delighted to be making such a difference.”
More Police patrol
Since Luton BID began part-funding two Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs) last November, Luton town centre now benefits from an even greater daily police patrol. Thanks to the BID’s continued collaboration with Bedfordshire Police, there are now four PCSOs and four Police Constables (PCs) in total, providing a valuable and easily accessible uniformed presence at prominent town centre locations and operating out of the new Police Hub located in The Mall, Luton.
Kathryn Holloway, Bedfordshire Police and Crime Commissioner added: “This is the best possible example of the business community working directly with policing to improve safety and respond to crime in their area. Working together to improve our towns and villages has a huge impact on our county and standard of living. There are now fours PCs and four PCSOs which makes a huge difference to all those who shop, work and enjoy leisure time in the town centre.”
Metal detecting wands and high-vis tabards
Among the BID-funded initiatives, Luton BID has been working with Bedfordshire Police, the Security Industry Authority, Luton Borough Council and the town’s evening economy venues to provide new high-tech metal detecting wands and high-visibility tabards for night time door staff. Brewery Tap, After 8 Club, Grosvenor Casino and The Galaxy Centre were the first to take up the offer of metal detectors last month and their staff also received an hour-long guidance session on how to use the new equipment.
Town centre evening economy guide
Another BID project is aimed at the town’s growing student population with the development of the first ever town centre evening economy guide. The new pocket guide, which features 55 evening and night time businesses, was distributed at the University of Bedfordshire’s Freshers’ Fair and issued to all town centre businesses and key outlets.
Through their important role in the community, the BID Ambassadors continue to wear body cams as they go about their daily duties, enabling them to record any instances of anti-social behaviour.
New neighbourhood environmental officers
Luton BID’s work with Luton Borough Council to highlight town centre issues has resulted in six new neighbourhood environmental officers to work alongside the BID Ambassadors to help tackle environmental crimes and anti-social behaviour.
Other safety initiatives
In addition, Luton BID is also continuing to run regular Safer Neighbourhood Days and support the digital business crime radio scheme managed by Luton Business Against Crime (LBAC) for businesses to share crime and security intelligence. The BID has also worked closely with NOAH outreach team on various safety and security projects.
For more information on Luton BID and its various events and initiatives throughout the town centre, please visit the BID website www.lutontowncentre.org or contact a member of the BID team by calling 01582 510657 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.