Present: Cllr V Wright (Chairman of the Council - in the chair), Cllrs Glew, Wheatley, Irwin.
Clerk/Responsible Financial Officer, Sedlescombe Parish Council

Mr R Glew, Mrs J Dellow, Mrs S Martin (co-opted members)

Also present from Agenda item CS07/08.21 - Police Inspector Heather Keating and Neighbourhood Specialist Constable Jayne Cleverley


CS07/08.17 Apologies for absence were received from Cllr R Dellow (ill) and Cllr A Rand (working).

CS07/08.18 Councillors declarations of interests. None declared.

CS07/08.19 Public participation. No public present.

CS07/08.20 Minutes. The Chairman was authorised to sign the Minutes of the Meeting of the Committee held on 17/07/07.

CS07/08.21 Members introduced themselves to the Police. Inspector Keating explained that she had been in post since April 2007 and had been working on the subject of neighbourhood policing. From time to time she looked through the minutes of parish councils and had been interested to see what had been written in the Minutes of the Sedlescombe Crime & Safety Meeting of 17/07/07 which did not appear to reflect what she understood of the current situation, particularly regarding employment of a Special (see below). She had, therefore, requested, this meeting with the Committee.

Inspector Keating reported that a new initiative of micro-profiles is to be introduced in the Rother District to follow on from the large-scale neighbourhood profiles which have already been done. Sedlescombe has been included in the Battle profile and will be the first Battle parish to be looked at in detail. The first step that Sgt Porter, PC Cleverley and PCSO Crotch will start working on is identifying the self-defining areas in the parish and then to work on innovative ways of engaging the people in those areas. Once priorities have been identified, the Police will respond in a way agreed with the communities. It was agreed that Ralph and Jean Dellow will be Sedlescombe's key contacts along with Pauline Raymond.

From 15/10/07, Battle has its own dedicated neighbourhood policing sergeant. She is Sgt Sarah Porter and her job will be to supervise PCSOs and Specials. She will work mainly Mondays to Fridays. A new patrol plan is expected to be drawn up and all PCSOs will be required to look two weeks ahead. The Sgts covering Battle, Rye and Bexhill will aim at getting good news stories into the newspapers.

The Chairman explained that the Parish Council might be embarking on a new Local Action Planning exercise which could link in with the Police Initiative. With the School proposing doing a revised Travel Plan, it could be advantageous to jointly identify the priorities for Sedlescombe. Inspector Keating asked to be kept informed about the Council's decisions regarding Local Action Planning.

The Parish Council has not made a decision about whether it would be advantageous to pay for employing part of another PCSO. The Parish Council is holding some funds that could be used for this purpose (Village Security Fund) and a benefactor has also offered to provide funds. Inspector Keating said that other parishes are considering this action as well. It was agreed that the "Special for Sedlescombe" idea should be dropped as it is not likely to be workable unless a volunteer put him/herself forward to the Police specifying that he/she wanted to work in Sedlescombe. Even then, he/she would be encouraged by the Neighbourhood Policing Sgt to go to where he/she was most needed at the time, for example, to cover special events.

CS07/08.22 Large number of incidents that have occurred in Sedlescombe over the last few months. The Committee is concerned about the number of incidents some of which are small but distressing to the victims. PC Cleverley said that, on average, seven crimes a month are reported from Sedlescombe. However, it is known that there is a reluctance of people to report small matters as they do not want to worry the Police. There are, therefore, other matters that go unreported. In order for the Police to help us, residents should be encouraged to report all incidents, large or small, through the Police 0845 Number.

Mr Glew asked why, when the probable perpetrators of many of the smaller incidents are known, action is not being taken to stop them continuing with their anti-social behaviour. The Police are unable to take any action unless good evidence can be obtained.

CS07/08.23 Communication between the Parish Council and the Police/PCSOs. Committee members stressed the importance of all levels of the Police communicating regularly with the community. Communication with the Sedlescombe NHW team is considered important as is communication from our PCSO. The idea of a member of the committee walking around the Village with the PCSO every month is considered a useful means of communication but, according to PC Cleverley, is difficult to arrange because other matters always seem to crop up. Members are happy to have their planned meetings with the PCSO postponed if a problem has arisen meaning he cannot attend as long as he informs them. The Committee would like to see a leaflet delivered to each house with our PCSO's photo to introduce him to the Village. His picture will be added to the NHW paper that is given to people moving into the Village.

PC Cleverley has the list of meetings of the Crime & Safety Committee and Inspector Keating said she would try to attend every other meeting.

The Chairman thanked Inspector Keating and PC Cleverley for attending what had been a very positive and useful meeting.

The next meeting of the Committee will be held on Tuesday 6 November in Committee Room 1 at 10:00.

Chairman.............................................. Date......................................