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Plea for CCTV in Gorleston

PUBLISHED: 11:19 23 December 2011 | UPDATED: 11:19 23 December 2011

Pictured: PC Jason Howell and CCTV volunteer Stuart Malkovich

Pictured: PC Jason Howell and CCTV volunteer Stuart Malkovich

Archant

CCTV cameras in Gorleston have helped catch robbers, track down missing children and flag up road traffic collisions to the emergency services since they were introduced four years ago.

But now funding is running out and volunteers are in short supply, and the service desperately needs new volunteers to step forward and to secure backing of £10,000 per year to continue its good work.

The dedicated people behind the project were treated to an awards ceremony and Christmas buffet at Gorleston Pavilion this week, and police hope more kind-hearted helpers will step forward.

PC Jason Howell, who works in Gorleston town centre, said: “We want to thank the volunteers who give up their time free of charge week after week to make Gorleston CCTV a success.

“But we also want to put something back into Gorleston and provide a service to make it safer for the public and for businesses to protect their stock.

“We had some big funding at the start and we’re in that last year and it’s going to run out.”

The eight CCTV cameras reduced crime by 33pc in their first year and it has not risen since.

And the scheme’s 17 volunteers recall numerous CCTV successes, including getting the evidence to convict a thief who mugged a blind man at a cash point and finding a child with learning difficulties who had gone missing from her school.

Stuart Malkovich, who is a director at the Pavilion Theatre, is one of the volunteers and hopes people will get involved to help save the scheme.

He said: “It’s a worthwhile thing to do and if you can give a few hours you can help the community.”

He has been volunteering for 15 months and received full training.

The scheme was originally funded by a grant from the Great Yarmouth Enterprise fund, but are now running out of cash to keep the cameras running and are searching for backing.

If you can give up time to man the cameras, call police on 101 and ask for volunteer recruitment, or email enquiry@gorlestoncctv.co.uk

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