Radio scheme declared a ‘massive success’

A radio scheme that was introduced to help reduce shoplifting in stores and businesses, and anti-social behaviour, has been declared a “massive success” by Walsall Council and police.pelsall radio scheme

The Pelsall Village Radio Scheme, which was launched in November last year by Pelsall/Rushall/Shelfield and High-Heath Neighbourhood Watch Association, has led to a 70 per drop in shoplifting.

Local police officers say anti-social behaviour has also reduced by 40 per cent since the scheme started.

Over 50 shopkeepers and local businesses in Pelsall joined up to the scheme, which was set up with support from Walsall Police and Brownhills, Pelsall, Rushall & Shelfield Area Partnership.

Each business was supplied with a walkie talkie that allows them to contact other members of the scheme and pass on information about shoplifters and other issues.

Funding was provided by Brownhills, Pelsall, Rushall & Shelfield Area Partnership and the West Midlands Police Community Initiative Fund. The scheme is also being support by Safer Walsall Partnership’s ASB Unit.

Kevin Pitt, Walsall Police Community Partnerships Officer, said: “Most of the businesses in the village, including public houses and a social club, plus the local library, have now received their walkie-talkes and all are finding the scheme useful.

“Since the scheme was introduced police figures show that shoplifting in the village has fallen by around 70 per cent and incidents of anti-social behaviour by around 40 per cent which is impressive.

“I have spoken to shopkeepers and all of them have said they feel safer and that the scheme has made a big difference.”

Councillor Zahid Ali, the Council’s portfolio holder for public protection, said: “We are absolutely delighted with the success of this scheme which is making a huge difference to local businesses and shop owners and it has really helped reduce the number of shop-lifting offences.

“This sends a strong message to any criminals in the area that the people of Pelsall stand united in the fight against crime and it will not be tolerated.”

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