Falkirk CCTV switch on the way

CCTV for Falkirk is currently monitored from Kilncraigs in Alloa
CCTV for Falkirk is currently monitored from Kilncraigs in Alloa

A new CCTV system will keep a watching eye on the streets of Falkirk from a new location from early next year.

The current shared arrangements between neighbouring authorities ended after Stirling Council announced it was pulling out of the deal .

It sees the city, along with towns in Falkirk and Clackmannanshire monitored from a centre at Kilncraigs in Alloa.

It is believed the decision by Stirling councillors was designed to save money.

Officials were then forced to look at how the Falkirk area could be adequately covered.

There are 88 cameras covering the district monitored by Enigma CCTV Ltd from the Alloa base. It monitors town centres, but doesn’t include cameras on schools, offices and other public buildings.

Fiona Campbell, Falkirk Council’s head of policy, told members of the authority’s executive that a new base had been identified in Falkirk Police Station.

She said: “The partnership had been operating for over 10 years and there has been significant grant application which allowed us to have state-of-the-art monitoring facilities.

“Locally, it also supports the Shop Safe system which provides a live radio link between a number of shops in Falkirk town centre.

“There is a suggestion that when the system moves it could be used for other things, including operating a local CCTV service.”

The cost to Falkirk Council for the system this year is just over £200,000 and a report showed that this is likely to be the cost of running the new local service.

Councillors heard cash is available to cover the one-off £50,000 relocation costs.

Councillor Jim Blackwood said; “It is disappointing to see Stirling and Clackmannshire withdrawing from this important service.

“Figures show that last year 2448 incidents were recorded in this area. CCTV allows a quick response to these incidents and assists in making our town centres a safer environment.”

Councillor Craig Martin, council leader, said: “It’s disappointing to see what was a good shared service across Forth Valley being impacted on by cuts.”

The largest group of incidents recorded last year, 41 per cent, involved alcohol, drugs, assault and vandalism, with 22 per cent involving public disorder.