Sunday 8 June 19:09
Over the past 4 months I have really begun to get a feel for the vital work that we are doing with other emergency services and partners both statutory and voluntary to keep everyone safe as they use the roads in Surrey and Sussex.
Over the past few weeks there have a been a number of serious crashes where sadly people have died, or have suffered life changing injuries. Each one of these people has a family affected by what has happened and are likley to continue to be affected by it for a very long time. That is not lost upon me at all and I wonder how people go on to rebuild their lives long after the incident.
I have also met with the Father of a young man who died a year ago next week in a crash in Sussex to understand how we can support families at such a difficult time.
Last week we launched our drink drive campaign for the Summer.(I read with horror of 35 people having already been charged with drink driving in Kent since the 1st June.)
We have one of the busiest roads in Europe running through our Policing area of Surrey and Sussex, with vehicles from all parts of the world using it to get to their final destination,a busy international airpot and some of the most stunning scenery in the UK as well iconic cities such as Brighton.
Each one of those vehicles have a human being in charge of it who will have a number of choices to make as they get into the vehicle and begin their journey. Some may be travelling alone, some with family or friends but each has a responsibility for their occupants and other road users..
Each one will know if they are fit to drive, tired or distracted and as a result may not be fully focused on driving as safely as they can. It’s their choice to start the engine and move off.
We can’t be by the roadside as every one of those drivers get into their car to begin their journey, but we can educate and influence their behaviour and bring around long term change.
This goes in tandem with engineering opportunities, the thought of the technology that is likely to emerge over the next 10 years is frankly scary.
Policing is much more than just enforcing the law. It’s about changing behaviour, educating people, giving them choices and where necessary using enforcement .
As a parent of 2 who are about to start learning to drive, I don’t necessarily worry about what they are doing as I can to some extent control it , but I can’t influence the choices of other road users they may encounter as they are out driving ..
As a driver or road user you can help us to do this .
To watch the video visit http://vimeo.com/97052954.
Road users in Sussex can text officers on 65999 with details about people they suspect of drink or drug driving or visit www.operationcrackdown.co.uk.
If you know someone is driving while over the limit call 999.
Take a look at the link here for other wider advice
Thursday 24 April 19:36
Looking Forward ....
Today the Force and PCC published our plans for the coming year. This would you expect to cover alot of things such as ’ Catching Criminals ’ and dealing with ‘Speeding motorists.’
What I would do is ask you to have a read there are some subtle changes going on.. some I have been able to get involved in and had the opportunity to think differently and meet some very highly motivated people who want to work with us .
Working With Surrey Police
Some of that work is around working closer with Surrey Police and I am lucky enough to be working with the highly motivated officers in Surrey who are responsible for Roads Policing and Casualty Reduction. Like the Sussex officers their passion is to make sure that everyone arrives home safely from work rest or play whether they are on foot bike or in a car.
This is not about penalising motorists for not complying with the law, it’s about trying to change behaviour with enforcement available to the officers if they see fit .Sometimes a conversation is enough for someone to reflect upon what the consequences of the actions could lead to.
Listening to a father whose son died in a car accident recently was gut wrenching. I would hate for any of us to go through that . That poor father has lost opportunities in the future that many of us will go onto enjoy through no fault of his own.
The other role of Roads Policing is to tackle criminals who use the roads.. How many people do you know who don’t own a bike car or motor bike ? Very few ..
How many people intent on committing crimes such as burglary will travel to the location on the bus ? Very few ..
So Roads Policing is there to deny the criminals the roads and to disrupt prevent and detect offences. The Al Capone style of Policing working with partners to achieve all of this together.
Pop Up Hubs
Some of the most vulnerable people in our society spend the majority of their time on the streets and very often with the most complex health issues.Over the last 18 months we have been working with a number of agencies including SHORE and local authorities to find new ways to reconnect people into society.
Many have found themselves at their lowest having fled a violent relationship. Sadly many from this community become victims themselves. The bottom line is that they are human beings and if we are to make Sussex a safer place for all we need to work to find new ways to reduce vulnerability and demand. The dedication of the outreach teams has taught many officers and staff within Sussex Police new skills, which are beginning to make a difference in all that we do.
You may remember I have previously referred to Pc Bernie Lawrie, a PC from Arun who uncovered one of the most silent of all crimes. That was a couple of years ago but since then she and other colleagues have done so much to help protect victims of scam mail.
She will be involved in a live chat next week but here you can find out a bit more ..
Volunteers, Partners and Supporters
The new pieces of work compliment all of the other areas that we are striving to improve in, but we can’t do it in isolation. The volunteers and Specials supporting us are worth their weight in gold, groups such as those who help us search for missing people, the Neighbourhood Watch, Victim Support and Community Speed Watch.
Looking forward we are having to tighten our belts but we are trying to treat the causes and not just the symptoms to reduce crime and keep people safe.
Looking forward times of great change for us all but they also offer us many opportunities that we should grab with both hands to try and make a difference ..
Sunday 16 February 16:59
Sunday Afternoon Reflection
I haven’t written a blog for quite some time. It’s not because I have nothing to say ( those who know me know I always have something to say !!) but there has been an awful lot going on at work and at home and some of that has merged at times .
Firstly what’s my current job all about then ?
Well I am the Supt looking after Roads Policing in Surrey and Sussex . That’s not just about the dedicated officers who attend crashes and monitor the speed cameras. It’s so much more subtle than that . I have never worked on the Roads Policing Teams before and therefore have had to spend some time soaking up what they do, their acronyms and view of the world .
I am very humbled by some of the work that goes on to keep people safe,support families and victims and look forward to the new engineering opportunities. Some of you may know that I have a background in Divisional work as well as the worlds of Public Order and Firearms . At a recent ACPO conference Tom Winsor stated that he thought officers and staff within the RPU world have the most dangerous job .
Using my personal and professional judgement I have to agree. I have seen officers in Surrey and Sussex over the last few months putting themselves between harm and the public. They are berated by some for doing this but they are right and if they had not further questions would be asked and people would have been hurt - seriously
Working closer - Surrey and Sussex Roads Policing
We have different methods of working, but the bottom line is that we all come to work to do the same thing and each day we are working closer . I’m proud of the support Surrey offered to allow officers from Sussex to attend the funeral of a colleague who taken from us so suddenly . Likewise the flooding has offered opportunities too.
I really feel for those affected by the Flooding , we saw the impact of flooding In Arun 18 months ago and know that when the waters subside that is the beginning of the recovery phase, the most difficult for all concerned.A time when the cameras disappear but you really need support and commitment going forward
Other opportunities - partners
The support from partners in relation to road safety is really tangible and gives me alot of hope for the future as we move forward . I know that the 20 mph speed limits have created a great deal of debate . Early indications are that they are the way forward, but very much community driven ..
Bottom line is that I am very proud of all the people across Surrey and Sussex that work within my remit . I’m humbled by their commitment to the families of those involved in collisions . It’s not a role it’s a vocation and recognition came at a recent coroners court in Brighton.
For Me ..I have recently hung up my Bronze Public Order boots, a sad time for me as I love being on the ground and taking time to talk to staff and getting involved.
In February I attended and passed a Gold / Strategic Firearms Course in Durham . I learned alot from colleagues from Forces I don’t normally mix with, as well as placing alot of pressure on myself to pass !!
Looking forward I will be working Brighton Pride Late Turn as the Silver and a couple of other operations including football at the Amex . #seagulls!!
Lastly I’m training for what I think will be my last Brighton Marathon. I had a year off last year but was there when Sam collapsed; so sad, a young man with so many dreams and so much to give … I realised that I missed the camardary of the event and wanted one more go - How foolish am I ?
Today I took part with my son in the Brighton Half Marathon, a well organised event as ever . As I passed the bottom of Grand Ave I remembered Sam and what he could have gone on to achieve.
For me there are so many opportunities in my current role, there are some fantastic people committed to making a difference.
They don’t expect or need a medal as they reach a milestone, as I got today, but they do need recognition from the public and people like me . I am more than willing to do that and need to stay focused on that throughout .
In the background the training continues for early April . In essence the common themes are that at work and in my own life we are all looking forward getting ready for new challenges whilst maintaining normality .
Lots to do but a real opportunity to make a difference
Tuesday 24 December 10:03
A little Christmas magic
For the attention of all PARENTS of young children: On 24th December at just before 6pm, the International Space Station will make a pass over the UK, lasting for about 3 minutes. Clouds allowing, the pass will be bright and clear. For the attention of all young CHILDREN: On 24th December at just before 6pm you will be able to see Santa’s sleigh flying through the sky. Please share this
Thursday 31 October 19:03
All assembled and ready to go to look after our honoured guests #topteam
Thursday 31 October 19:02
The foul weather didn’t dampen the spirits of all involved in Op Colour today.
Thursday 31 October 19:00
RPU officers getting ready today for a very special visitor
Saturday 26 October 16:42
Early Days But....
So having shut down Operation Mansell, the Force wide policing response to the protests at Balcombe I took some time off . It was booked prior to the start of the Operation and couldn’t have come at a better time. It meant I could spend time with my family, get used to my eldest son going back to Uni and spending time with some people who are really important to me.. they know who they are !!
On the 14th Oct I started back in my new role as the Superintendent for Roads Policing in Sussex. My role is not just about us responding to crashes but working together with a number of partners and parties to keep people safe on the roads and to disrupt/ deter/ capture those committing offences across Sussex who are using the roads to commit crime and ASB .
What I have been impressed with is the professionalism of those committed to the investigation of the crashes, the support they offer to families and friends of those sadly affected by crashes and the drive to support the Force in targeting criminals travelling in and out of Sussex.
We are also working closer with colleagues in Surrey and on Thursday I saw them in action at a serious accident involving a motorcyclist and tractor . Hopefully the motorcyclist is on the mend and my thoughts are with the driver of the tractor too.
This morning I promoted the refreshed Op Crackdown website at the annual Sussex Neighbourhood Watch Conference - all great work driven by C/I Natalie Moloney and her teams .
It’s early days but yet again as at Arun I find myself working with some of the most dedicated and motivated teams aiming at keeping everyone safe , no matter what age .. That’s what it’s all about ..
Sunday 15 September 16:21
Update on my current role
I’m still dedicated to the protests and other activities at Balcombe.
This has required a few officers from across the Force to come together and work with me for a short while. We have brought in officers from a number of Forces to support us at the site whilst we maintain ‘business as usual’ across Sussex.
The aims for the operation at Balcombe are in essence :
To keep people safe
To facilitate peaceful protest
To allow Caudrilla and other businesses to carry on their legitimate business
To minimise the disruption to the community in and around Balcombe.
Thursday 22 August 19:40
Just thought I should explain why I am not talking about my new job on Roads Policing.
I have currently been seconded onto the operation associated with the protests at Balcombe. This is not long term but I need to focus on what was required in this operation to make sure we keep everyone involved as safe as possible.
This has required a few officers from across the Force to come together and work with me for a short while .It may be all change for a short while but for the very best reasons.
Our aims for the operation are :
To keep people safe
To facilitate peaceful protest
To allow Caudrilla and other businesses to carry on their legitimate business
To minimise the disruption to the community in and around Balcombe.
Tuesday 23 July 20:51
So, after the second day in the new job, I am beginning to understand what the Roads Policing Unit and associated partners are all about .
First impressions were what a bunch of professional, compassionate and motivated people . Second thoughts - (and normally a good objective reaction,) nothing has changed today and is unlikely to change I think and it’s backed up by lots of evidence .
We have had to develop some strategic objectives to support the PCC plan and that of the Chief constable
In essence they are
- Reducing those injured & killed on our roads,
- Supporting a reduction in crime ,
- Enhancing partnerships,
- Improving satisfaction & confidence
Over the coming couple of months we need to translate that internally and externally. All good fun but what it is all about no matter what rank we are
Wednesday 26 June 19:38
Moving on ...
Over the past 8 weeks a number of colleagues and I have taken part in an internal promotion procedure, hoping to become Superintendents. There are only a few of these posts across the Force and as such they are tactical guardians for the Force setting the direction and keeping the hand on the tiller.
Whilst it is very competitive and competency based I have no doubt that any one of the those who were initially supported could have been appointed because of their experience and commitment.
Last Thursday myself and a few others had the phone call to say that we had been successful, sadly others received a call none of us want to take. As a result of that I will be moving to our Operations Department in July, looking after the Roads Policing Unit and other areas .
I won’t deny that I am excited by the opportunities now in front of me, however the past 2 1/2 years I have spent at Arun have probably been some of the best years I have had in the Police, I have learnt a great deal and have hopefully made some life long contacts.
I shall miss the teams, partners, the councillors, my early morning runs along the seafronts in Bognor and Littlehampton and the buzz when I walk in the door to hear of some great pieces of work going on.
My replacement for the time will be Pip Taylor, Pip is highly motivated has a wide experience as a detective and uniformed officer and will undoubtedly take Arun onto higher things.
I might be moving on but Arun certainly has left a mark on me .
Friday 24 May 15:44
Earlier this week the West Sussex Divisional Command Team got together. We were asked to draw a metaphor which represented how we saw life in the service .
This was what I talked about , enjoying the success but understanding there will always be a hill to climb …
Sunday 12 May 08:04
Could you help us to make a difference ?
Operation Accent is a year old this week and we have been looking to see what has gone well, what we could do better and what we could do differently.
At the heart of the operation is a team of dedicated and motivated people, many of whom do not work for Sussex Police.
Many are Outreach Workers who have great language skills and an ability to put people at their ease.They have worked with us to inform people arriving in the UK what they can expect from the Police and other public sector organisations.
What we have learnt over the past 12 months is that we have to change our style of Policing, taking into account the cultural differences.In essence we need to recruit more people from our Eastern European community. It’s no good trying to work with the community when your workforce does mirror it .
Our PCSO recruitment opens tomorrow morning and we are really keen to hear from any one who is from Eastern Europe to join us at Arun ..
If you want to know more have a look at the website from 0900 tomorrow. http://tinyurl.com/c76yza9
Sunday 7 April 19:56
Hitting the target but missing the point
I could sit here bathing in the substantial crime reduction that we have achieved in Arun but I won’t .Community safety is so much more subtle than that.
What do you mean I hear some say ? Well we have had 1274 fewer reported crimes on Arun, with a 25 % reduction in burglary and similar reductions across the board on various crime types but that’s not good enough in my humble opinion..If you have been a victim of crime this year you need to feel safe in knowing what we and our partners are doing to reduce the chances of it happening again.
What we are about on Arun is working with our partners to change behaviour long term and to drive out antisocial behaviour and crime. Where that doesn’t work we will use all of our powers to stop such behaviour, which means arresting people.
Over the past 12 months we have really focused on those who do not chose to engage through Operation Impact. Over 200 people have been arrested and 75 search warrants executed.
I’ve not gone soft nor missed the point. I understand that some people need a 2nd chance and we should facilitate that but where they don’t please be sure of what we will do to stop offending.
It’s not about hitting a target but focusing on the victim and doing the best we can ..
Long may that continue
Thursday 14 March 08:39
I think I’m going to adopt this motto as it sums up what we are doing on #Arun and starting to see the benefits
Saturday 2 March 16:11
Ten years on .. PCSO's the foundation of Neighbourhood Policing
Ten years ago I know exactly what I was doing this weekend ; Photocopying handouts and doing all sorts of things getting ready to welcome the first PCSO’s into Sussex.
Initially funded by the Home Office for 3 years, I wonder where we would be today if it weren’t for our PCSO’s, some of the most highly motivated people we have working within the Policing Family.
As a newly promoted Inspector my role was to develop a recruitment process,the training programme and set out what their role was and how they worked alongside police officers in Sussex.
They were a new breed - not warranted but still designated with some powers. The public and Police Federation were in some areas sceptical as to what they could achieve and headlines such as ‘Plastic Police’ were unhelpful, but I am glad we persevered.
None the less the first 22 completed their initial course, were designated with their powers by the Chief Constable and made their way out onto the divisions to lay the foundations for what has today become a pivotal role.
As ever, Brighton embraced them assigning a highly motivated Sgt to tutor them and I remember the Home Office rep paying them a visit, wandering along St James Street with John and Cheryl, who sadly is no longer with us but very much in our thoughts .
Villages in the North and East of the County were very supportive and a number of parishes seeing the value wanted to fund additional posts and West Sussex looked to introduce them into the local schools
Over the last 10 years we have seen their role evolve. Those working on Arun are making a real difference, care passionately about what they do and I know this is replicated across the country.
Many believed it was a stepping stone for those wanting to go on to become Police Officers and we have seen that happen for a few and it has really helped the integration.However, many of the original 22 are still with us working hard as part of the bigger Extended Policing Family.
I may have been tasked with developing the initial training and recruiting well over another 300 PCSO’s between 2003 and 2006 but I think they have taught me a great deal and we should celebrate their success and achievements .
To find out more have a look at this link http://tinyurl.com/bdljgcv
Happy Anniversary Sussex PCSO’s !!
Tuesday 19 February 19:04
Op Accent a year on .. It's here to stay that's for sure
A couple of weeks ago we reviewed what we had achieved under the Operation Accent banner. Around the table were sat a number of really motivated people who over the past year have just got on and worked together, engaged with partners and the Eastern European Community and achieved some notable successes.
I am very talkative, but I made the effort to really listen to what they were saying and saw a sparkle in their faces, something which had probably motivated them a number of years previously to apply to join Sussex Police.
There’s the investigators who have worked tirelessly to bring offenders to justice and some comfort and safety to the victims. Working hard with CPS to secure conspiracy charges and gain the confidence of the victims and ultimately the community.
Then there’s Sgt Glenton and the team, they have worked hard visiting farms, surgeries and churches to reach out to the community to understand what their needs are, their concerns and fears. Rad has taught us so much over the past few months.
Our partners have been very supportive locally, at county and even national level and without their support we couldn’t have made the progress we have.
Arun and Chichester need large numbers of people to work the land and those who travel from Europe travel miles to do a back breaking job that not many Uk citizens won’t do. Without them many local businesses would go to the wall and we should welcome the workers as best we can.
What we don’t welcome are individuals who prey upon the workers using violence, threats and isolation to impose their will.Over the past 12 months we have built strong links with partners businesses and members of the community to identify those individuals,
I’m not too naive to believe this is the finished product. We still have so much to achieve . Many of the workers did not trust the Police in their home country and therefore it takes time for them to feel comfortable in our presence in the UK
There is also a large settled community within Arun who have migrated from Eastern Europe. Second and third generations are growing up, going to local schools and making a real contribution to the local community.
We should try to embrace all of their differences and work hard to understand difference and build upon the foundations dug over the past 12 months under the Op Accent banner.
Over the next 12 months Op Accent will be working across Arun and Chichester as well as also focusing on under reporting of crime within the Eastern European community. Trying to find ways to improve reporting across a number of crimes that are unseen by many but nonetheless scar so many people.
Crimes such as Domestic Violence and hate crime.
The work has just begun Operation Accent is a year old but it’s key to reducing vulnerability across Arun and Chichester. Something everyone deserves surely ?
Friday 18 January 20:56
Policing with consent and led by community information
Today has been a day that has reinforced for me and the various departments and partners what can be done to support our communities within Arun and by the communities in Arun.
All of these examples have been referred to in press releases but I wanted to reflect on what that really means. Some of the incidents still have ongoing proceedings so I am not able to discuss the details . If you take a look at the links you will get an over view of all of them.
Operation Accent has been running for 10 months and this investigation was at the heart of what we have been trying to achieve long term; Reducing vulnerability within the community , improving individuals lifestyles, and the contribution they are able to make, myth busting and where necessarily tackling criminality. The verdict has had a lot of coverage here and in Poland and sends a very clear message out to those who chose to intimidate and prey on those who are vulnerable within our many different communities in Arun
This relates to a Pub in Felpham which saw an police led operation on the 23rd December. Over the past 2 years we have been working with the local community and our partners to address the complaints and incidents linked to the premises. Today saw the premises having its license revoked a very serious step and matter for all concerned.
The evidence offered by the Police and West Sussex Fire and Rescue provided a sanitized and objective stance. The representations made by members of the local community were very personal, disturbing and yet sobering ( if you forgive the pun). Yes they had moved to the area knowing there was a pub there , what they didn’t expect was for people attending the premises to think it acceptable to behave so appallingly on a regular basis.
Licensing objectives are used to set a standard that not only the local community, but visitors and those working within a licensed premises can expect to be upheld by all.
I listened to one individual asking me why she should have to wheel a relative out into the road in their wheelchair as a result of bad parking linked to the pub. This may not seem very high on the police priorities but for me I have been there in that position and it’s not right and is another challenge you take on whilst trying to look after someone who is not well and wants the least of fuss made.
In terms of Mr Miller - he was arrested in the early hours thanks to the public. Again we had been working to locate him and had completed all of our ongoing lines of enquiry and we knew that without the help and consent and information from the community we would struggle to find him in the near future.
Whilst everyone deserves the opportunity to change or reform their behaviour it is important that we do all we can to bring individuals to justice, not only does it prevent further offences it may deter others.
You may think that there are only be a few officers on duty across Arun who can overtly be identified as police officers, but we have other resources working with us who are not so easily identifiable as Police. Their role is to target those affecting people on Arun; be it through antisocial behaviour, criminality and or drug dealing.
More importantly we have the eyes and ears of the public working with us and are able to achieve a great deal with this help and information . People may not feel comfortable in leaving their name or number but have used the 101 or crime stoppers number to leave us the information. Those snippets may go on to become last piece of the jig saw puzzle and without it we may never see the true picture.
Long may it continue - So please if you know something,don’t keep it to yourself let us know - you may help us prevent further offences,help us reunite victims with their property or stop some one from becoming a victim. We don’t need your name just call Crime Stoppers - 0800 55111 or look at the website.
All posts >
Monday 17 December 19:58
This is what it's all about
We have an ongoing programme of surveying victims of crime and ASB asking a number of questions one of which is as below .. This is a very positive one of several I read today ..
Q What is it that makes you feel satisfied/dissatisfied with how you were kept informed of the progress?
A Because they couldn’t do any more than they did. They phoned me to say the person involved is appearing in court the following day. After he had been in court they phoned and sent a letter to tell me what the outcome was.
Just about to drop the officers concerned an email.. This is what it’s all about