Security camera petition backed

Ann Marshall (left) (south neighbourhood consultative forum  chairman) is presented with a petition for a CCTV camera to the rear of St Patrick's shops by Owton Ward councillors Marjory James and Angie Wilcox (right). Picture by FRANK REID
Ann Marshall (left) (south neighbourhood consultative forum chairman) is presented with a petition for a CCTV camera to the rear of St Patrick's shops by Owton Ward councillors Marjory James and Angie Wilcox (right). Picture by FRANK REID
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HUNDREDS of residents have signed a petition calling for a CCTV camera to be installed behind a shopping parade to boost security so they can park their cars.

The petition has been signed by 258 Hartlepool residents who are calling for a camera to be installed at the back of St Patrick’s shops, in Owton Manor Lane.

Concerned residents and shopkeepers contacted ward councillors because they were having trouble parking in front of the shops.

They were also concerned about the council’s camera car snapping drivers parking illegally.

There are only six spaces at the front of the shops but there are nearly 60 at the back.

But before people are willing to park there, they want a camera installing to boost security.

Labour councillors for the Owton ward, Marjorie James and Angie Wilcox, presented the petition to Labour councillor Ann Marshall, chairman of the south neighbourhood consultative forum.

It is understood that one camera would cost between £1,500 and £2,000 and the forum is due to meet in the New Year to decide on the funding.

Councillors say that once the bus is in the bay there is only room for about six cars and that residents have called them with concerns about parking in front of the shopping parade because of the camera car. Hartlepool Borough Council launched the £40,000 camera car in May. The state-of-the-art vehicle takes photographs of cars parked illegally outside schools, in bus stops, on cycle paths or in areas where waiting is prohibited.

Coun Wilcox said: “There is not enough parking at the front and shopkeepers have been losing trade and people were also worried about parking outside of the bays and being caught by the camera.

“But they are not comfortable parking at the back because there is no security.

“We have been working with the council about the camera and the feedback has been positive.”

Coun James said: “This camera could have a hugely positive impact on the area and give an economic boost to the shops.

“Hopefully it will go to the south neighbourhood forum for agreement in the new year.”

A council spokesman said: “A council spokesman said: “We can confirm that a petition calling for a CCTV camera to be located at the rear of St Patrick’s shops has been received by the council.

“Concerns about security in this area were raised at the South Neighbourhood Consultative Forum in October so it is something which we are aware of. Consideration will now be given to the petition.”