Hereford is set to receive funding from the Government to help improve safety in parts of the city. In particular, the focus will be made on improving safety on routes that are often used by women and girls at night.

Following a grant bid to the Home Office, The Police and Crime Commissioner for West Mercia (PCCWM) have been successful in their bid for a grant to facilitate Safer Streets in Hereford. The key objective is to make public places safer for all.

These improvements were identified as a result of West Mercia Police consultation. It focusses on routes taken home by females when out in the Night Time Economy (NTE) in Hereford. Three geographic areas of concern were identified (Aylestone, Whitecross Road and Bishops Meadow and Canary Bridge) through crime statistics, public surveys and wider consultation. In response, the Hereford Safer Streets Project will specifically target Violence Against Women and Girls (VAWG) offences of street harassment and violence, stalking, sexual assault, rape and domestic abuse perpetrated in public.

The grant will deliver the following improvements –

 Guardianship Expansion – expanding the ‘Lean on me’ programme outside the city centre.
 Education Programme to Partners – educating key partners in the NTE through increasing understanding of behaviours which are sexually harmful resulting in a zero tolerance approach of perpetrators.
 Awareness will promote knowledge of safe spaces to go to in times of crisis for help and support.
 Education Programme to Schools / Colleges.
 Campaign – through VAWG engagement, develop a campaign and materials that focus on a non-victim blaming approach by appealing to bystanders to report unacceptable behaviour to guardians, raising awareness for women and girls to report concerns and detailing support services available, developing an accreditation for establishments to
support zero tolerance approaches and highlighting they employ trained staff and sponsored art project amongst students to design appropriate signage for the Safer Routes.
 CCTV – cameras to be installed for each of the identified geographical areas to provide suitable coverage and linked in to the existing county wide network.
 Lighting – enhanced street lighting for all areas to provide increased illumination and feelings of personal safety.
 Landscaping – at identified locations to manage tree / shrub overgrowth and increase natural surveillance.

The improvements that require delivery from the council are as follows:

 Additional CCTV cameras
 Enhanced street lighting
 Landscaping of trees / shrubs to increase natural surveillance

Herefordshire Council is expected to approve a spend of up to £283,908 on the Safer Streets 3 Project, which is being delivered in conjunction with The Police and Crime Commissioner for West Mercia, who have been awarded a
grant from the Home Office to deliver this project.