A SCHEME has launched to make shoppers and businesses in Thirsk safer and more secure.

The Police and Crime Commissioner’s Office (PCC) has supported the installation of a new security radio system in the town.

The new radio link will help businesses, CCTV operators and the police work more closely together to both detect and deter crime.

It has been funded through the PCC’s Community Fund in partnership with Hambleton District Council, Coles Solicitors and Thirsk and District Business Association Forum.

Councillor Mark Robson, leader of Hambleton District Council, said: “This funding has provided valuable support which, together with a strong partnership approach to tackling business and retail crime, will provide a safer environment for our residents and visitors whilst helping to protect our market town businesses.

“We have seen very positive results with the Shopwatch scheme in Northallerton and are looking forward to replicating those successes in Thirsk.”

The scheme allows shopkeepers, the Police and the council’s CCTV control team to make and maintain contact with each other when criminals are active in the area.

It helps staff in the shops to be particularly vigilant and assists CCTV operators in gaining evidential footage and monitors suspected criminals throughout the town.

Guy Baragwanath, the Chair of Thirsk and District Business Association, said: “We hope that staff and shoppers will feel a lot safer as a result of improved information sharing in the town.

“The offer of renting a radio to join the scheme is open to all businesses in Thirsk and anyone interested in joining can contact the Safer Hambleton Hub at Hambleton District Council.”

For more information or to join the scheme, contact communitysafety.gcsx@hambleton.gov.uk.