Increased police patrols in Romford town centre achieve the desired reductions in crime

Sophie Linden, London's deputy mayor for Policing and Crime, joined Romford town officers on Friday.

Sophie Linden, London's deputy mayor for Policing and Crime, joined Romford town officers on Friday. - Credit: Archant

The busy autumn period that can sometimes see sharp rises in crime was met with increased patrols on the streets of Romford as a part of a targeted operation.

The increased patrols were part of the Autumn Nights Operation.

The increased patrols were part of the Autumn Nights Operation. - Credit: Archant

The successful Autumn Nights Operation is a Metropolitan Police initiative designed to curb the traditional rise in anti-social behaviour (ASB) around this time of year.

On Friday, officers were joined were joined by the deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime Sophie Linden as she saw first hand what the increased visible presence can achieve.

Across London last year, the two weeks between Halloween and Bonfire Night saw a 31 per cent increase in ASB incidents compared to the preceding fortnight.

But tactics like predictive mapping and analysis of crime hotspots have seen a 37 per cent reduction in ASB calls over the last three years.


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Insp John Goodwin has hailed the success of the operation with the Halloween weekend passing by without too many issues.

“Having a visible presence on the streets is the best deterrent for anyone intent on causing fear or distress,” he said.

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“The operation has been roped around Romford town centre with the idea being if we can deal with the low level ASB then we can stop it before it becomes any more serious.

“There was a good atmosphere in the town last weekend with our dispersal orders working extremely well.”

Test purchasing operations regarding the sale of fireworks, alcohol and over the counter weapons have also taken place during the last two weeks.

Mr Goodwin admitted his “surprise” about the fact that no proprietor had been caught out for selling goods to an underage tester.

Ms Linden, who was making her first visit to Havering in the role, reaffirmed City Hall’s commitment to a strong police presence on our streets.

She said: “We are really committed to real neighbourhood policing and there are resources to do this through the year to tackle crime.”

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