Norwich police take part in walkabout in Southwell Road and Trafalgar Street

Families living in Lakenham have been given the chance to have their say about issues affecting their daily lives at a walkabout event designed to empower members of the public.

Police officers from the Norwich South Safer Neighbourhood Team (SNT) took part in a partnership walkabout in the Southwell Road and Trafalgar Street area of Norwich.

The event, which took place between 1pm and 3pm yesterday, was also attended by community engagement officers and neighbourhood wardens from Norwich City Council.

Comments made and issues raised at the walkabouts, which are held quarterly, will go forward to help determine policing priorities in the area which currently include anti-social behaviour in Southwell Road.

Alyson Lowe, secretary of the New Lakenham Residents Association, who attended the event, said reports of problems in the local area were analysed to determine what became priorities and in what areas.

She said: 'Those areas that show the most reports are more likely to be chosen for a walkabout. The main issues that the people here (in Southwell Road) are complaining about is dogs mess around the back. It means that people can't walk on the grass – they don't use the grass which is a shame because there's a beautiful area out the back.

'One of the other issues around here is sorting out a changeover in the waste bins. Around here we still primarily have the old black bin system and get a lot of fly-tipping.

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'The problem is trying to encourage people to dispose of their waste correctly.'

As previously reported, Norfolk police have carried out a major revamp of neighbourhood policing in the county which has seen the amount of Safer Neighbourhood Teams in Norwich cut from seven to four – Norwich North, South, East and West. The teams used to meet every three months to discuss and set priorities at a Safer Neighbourhood Action Panel (SNAP) meeting.

But since the changes came into force in January, walkabouts have become a more popular way of giving members of the public the chance to have their say on what is happening in their neighbourhood.

Police Community Support Officer (PCSO) Nick Speakman, who attended yesterday's walkabout with PCSO Laura Saunders – the fourth the Norwich South team have held since January – said they were proving popular with the public.

He said: 'This is a nice way of trying to get out to the public and a bit more personal – a bit more hands-on. I think we're more approachable in this format than in a meeting style.'

To contact the team call 101.

Have you got a crime story? Call reporter Peter Walsh on 01603 772436 or email