A proposal to divide Greenisland into several segments covered by neighbourhood watch schemes has been raised.
The idea was discussed at last week’s meeting of the Greenisland Community Police Liaison Committee (CPLC).
Knockagh area councillor Noel Williams, who attended the meeting, said: “We were discussing the benefits of neighbourhood watch schemes, one of which is being considered in the Farm Lodge area.
“Indeed there has been interest shown in establishing such a scheme in lower Greenisland; I believe that the Greenisland estate would best be served by several ‘watch’ areas, which would effectively divide the estate into manageable and purposeful neighbourhood watch segments.
“There are other social benefits in having a neighbourhood watch scheme and could be particularly beneficial to those who are not working or retired. It might also serve as a great opportunity to meet others who live in the area, who had previously only been a ‘visible’ neighbour as opposed to one you actually engaged verbally.”
“An application to start a neighbourhood watch can be obtained through Carrickfergus Policing Community and Safety Partnership (PCSP). It is not difficult to organise such a scheme and a co-ordinator would be required for each area.”
Help is available to any resident who wishes to set up one of the schemes, said Carrick Inspector Martin Ruddy. “It’s something that has been talked about by residents in Greenisland for a while, particularly in the Farm Lodge area,” he added. “The schemes are administered by the Department of Justice and the Policing and Community Safety Partnership. Police would encourage residents to talk to their neighbours about setting up a scheme, and we can provide an information night about this if necessary. Each co-ordinator would oversee the area and liaise with local officers over any issues that have been raised.”
Meanwhile, the meeting also highlighted a decrease in crime rates for September - November 2013 in the immediate Greenisland area.
The provisional figures presented at the meeting were: assaults - 3; burglaries - 2; thefts - 10; incidents of criminal damage - 4; small fires - 4; youths causing annoyance (YCA) - 12; underage drinking - 4; arrests - 5 (3 for assault, 1 for theft and 1 for burglary). There were no racial incidents.
Mr Williams added: “CPLC members were pleased to see that there was a downturn in crime for the period and I feel that the PSNI are to be congratulated for their work and presence in the area. I do hope the trend will continue and that the Greenisland community will remain vigilant and cooperative with any PSNI investigations or enquiries.”
If you are interested in setting up a neighbourhood watch scheme in the borough, contact Carrick PCSP manager Neil Herron on 028 9335 8042.