60 ‘new improved’ CCTV cameras help to tackle crime across Falkirk
More than 60 new and improved fixed CCTV cameras are now in place across Falkirk Council – and their crystal clear images are already being used to tackle crime.
Members of Falkirk Council’s executive heard that with just one more left to install, the council is now on track to move staff to a state-of-the-art hub in its new Larbert offices, now known as the Foundry.
The CCTV hub will be located alongside the out of hours alarm and telecare monitoring services which are already up and running in Larbert.
The executive also heard that five more mobile cameras have been purchased to use across the district, as and where they are needed.
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In total, they now have 19 in central Falkirk and 15 in Grangemouth.
There are more cameras in Callendar Park, Grahams Road, Falkirk RetailPark, Newcarron, Camelon, Falkirk Wheel, Stenhousemuir, Larbert, Denny and Bo’ness.
Mobile cameras are currently being used in locations such as Helix Park while housing services have three that they can use wherever needed.
They will also be used during the decomissioning of the old municipal buildings which are due to be demolished in April.
The £1 million project is a key part of the Council of the Future projects – which aim to use technology to transform services and save money in the long run.
Officers told the elected members that there had been “positive discussions” with Police Scotland and they are hopeful that the force will agree to raise its current contribution of £32,000 towards the running costs of the operation.
The hope is that the council will also work with other partners to add cameras and already Paragon Housing and Avonbridge Community Group have come on board.
To date £600,000 of the £980,000 funding has been spent and the remaining budget will be spent on extending the coverage and integrating other CCTV cameras, for example those already in schools.
SNP councillor Gary Bouse said he was delighted to see the progress made.
He said: “I think it is fair to say that in the last five years we have seen a digital revolution.
“The MECS system is now an award-winning system and with this new CCTV system the clarity and quality of the images is incredible.
“I’m very pleased to say this was a manifesto pledge by this administration and we have delivered it.”
“Speaking to our community police officers, they are very impressed by it as they have already used it to identify criminal acts and say that the old system’s resolution would not have assisted in the same way.”
The Labour group leader Robert Bissett said that all parties had supported the move from analogue to digital and he was glad to see the devices being pooled together in the Foundry.
Councillors heard that the next stage will be to do an audit of the council area and look to see if there are any gaps in coverage and if there are other partners they could be working with.