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Howard and Byrne Solicitors, York - Criminal Defence Specialists

Police In Hambleton and Richmondshire Launch Churchwater Scheme

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8:57am 17th June 2014

Churchwatch was launched after a number of suspicious incidents at churches, chapels and other places of worship across the area over a number of years.

The scheme uses the Ringmaster system to quickly alert subscribers responsible for looking after churches to incidents or suspicious behaviour in other areas. This allows them to take action to prevent criminals taking advantage of the accessible nature of these buildings.

Police Community Support Officer Angie Preston, of Northallerton Safer Neighbourhood Team, is leading the initiative for the district. She said:

“Churches, chapels and other places of worship are home to items of historical and monetary value which attract the attention of thieves intent on depriving local communities of their heritage."

“Due to many of them being in small villages or unattended most of the time, they can be vulnerable to crime."

“I am encouraging anyone connected with churches such as vicars, priests and church wardens to sign up to Ringmaster.”

PCSO Preston added:

“If you notice anyone acting suspiciously near religious buildings to contact the police straight away so that we can send out alerts.”

To join the Ringmaster scheme please visit www.nypcommunitymessaging.org

For more information about making places of worship more secure please either contact your local Safer Neighbourhood Team or visit www.northyorkshire.police.uk/churchsecurity

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