Plan put forward to save CCTV in Fakenham - and the service could still have a future in Wells
PUBLISHED: 06:30 09 January 2014
Archant © 2013
A plan to save CCTV cameras in Fakenham has been put forward – but residents may be asked to accept a rise in council tax to pay for it.
It has also emerged that there is a possibility that security cameras may remain in Wells, despite Wells Town Council previously pulling out of the fight to save them.
North Norfolk District Council’s (NNDC) cabinet has voted to scrap all of its CCTV cameras to save £200,000 per year, and they are due to be switched off in March.
Fakenham, North Walsham and Sheringham town councils have been working on a plan to retain a CCTV service in their towns, but Wells and Cromer town councils have pulled out for financial reasons.
The three town councils have now written to NNDC asking for its CCTV hardware to be handed to the company Secure Defence UK, which they want to run the service.
They have also asked the district council to put up £90,000 to cover costs of reconfiguring the CCTV system.
They say it would cost NNDC £95,000 to decommission the cameras, so this would save £5,000.
The town councils would then be responsible for the costs of maintaining the cameras.
They have called for a meeting with NNDC and then want to put the proposal to its cabinet.
Fakenham mayor Adrian Vertigan said: “I think this is a positive move and we are hopeful that the district council will agree to our proposal.
“If the costs required are not within our budget then council tax payers may be asked if they are prepared to pay an increase in rates to keep a CCTV service.
“If the people of Fakenham are not prepared to do that then we can pull out of the plan. They will be fully consulted.”
Sheringham mayor Doug Smith said the new system proposed would be “far superior” and more cost effective than the current one and would monitored by the police.
Mr Smith said that Wells and Cromer town councils would be approached by Secure Defence UK and there was a “strong possibility” the cameras could be retained in Wells.
An NNDC spokesman said: “We will be considering the town councils’ proposal in due course and responding to them as soon as we can.”