Alexandra Park receives more than £200,000 in Safer Streets funding
Following a successful bid Hastings Borough Council has received £208,000 for community safety improvements in Alexandra Park.
Hastings Borough Council is committed to ensuring the borough is an enjoyable and safe space for visitors and residents. Following a bid with the Office of the Sussex Police and Crime Commissioner (OSPCC) to the Home Office, the council has received funding to help tackle violence against women and girls (VAWG) in Alexandra Park.
This bid was prompted by two local women Claire Noble and Kay Early who carried out a petition for safety improvements in the park. Their continued involvement in conversations with the council about safety and security has been vital in conveying the wider town's concerns.
Although sadly the wider societal problems women and girls face around their safety will not be solved through these works, the money will enable improvements to address some of the concerns raised by residents and improve feelings of comfort and security in this much-loved green space. The council will continue to offer support to residents who identity the need for safety improvements in the town.
The planned works include:
- Cutting back vegetation and planting low ground cover plants to create open paths
- Installing more lighting to improve visibility
- Updating notice boards and map signage with help information
- Fencing the lower substation and other locations to limit hidden spaces
- Installing CCTV to provide coverage in the park to reassure park users and reduce fear of crime
- Improving some public transport points by providing live bus times and new signage with help information.
Improvement works have already started with more due to be completed in the coming months, dependent on planning permission and the CCTV consultation. Residents are encouraged to share their views on the proposed CCTV by 8 April 2022 on Hastings Borough Council's website www.hastings.gov.uk/my-council/consultations/CCTV-consultation/.
Cllr Judy Rogers, lead councillor for community safety and chair of the Safer Hastings Partnership, said:
"As a White Ribbon accredited organisation, we are delighted to have been selected to receive this funding so that we can carry out improvement works in Alexandra Park. Sadly, we understand that these works are not a solution to the overall threat of violence faced by many women on a daily basis and a lot more needs to be done to combat this issue. However, we hope that the planned improvements which include the introduction of more lighting and CCTV help women and girls and everyone else who uses the park to feel safer.
"We want to thank Claire Noble and Kay Early who carried out a safety petition and have continued to be involved in conversations with us about improvements in the park. Their work over the many months highlighting the community's concerns has been incredible. We are thankful to have people who care and dedicate so much of their own time to helping our community to become a safer place for everyone."
Cllr Maya Evans, lead councillor for the environment, added:
"Our award-winning Alexandra Park is a real asset to the town and is popular with both residents and visitors, who enjoy its excellent offering of facilities. This has proven to be an essential space throughout the pandemic by offering a much-needed boost to mental and physical health.
"These improvement works will enable our park to continue to thrive and be enjoyed by all of our community."