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Thorpe End neighbours to keep an eye out for each other

People living on a Norwich street have decided everybody needs good neighbours after one of their homes was burgled last year.

Seppings Way residents have clubbed together to keep an eye on each others’ home and prevent similar crimes in the future by setting up a Home Watch scheme.

David Orr, 62, who lives on the Thorpe End cul-de-sac is co-ordinating the scheme.

He retired a few years ago after having a brain haemorrhage, so he said he is at home and around to keep an eye on the street.

The Seppings Way scheme aims to make neighbours more aware when someone is away, advise people how to make their homes safe and cooperate with other people living on the street.

But as well as preventing future crime in the area, the scheme has been an opportunity for the neighbours to get to know each other.

“For the first time we have got to know people”, he said. “I think traditionally we tend to regard the place we live as a dormitory and most people go to work and they come back late and go straight into their house and there is not much sense of community.

“Although it was a negative thing that one of our number was burgled, it has actually brought us together. All of the residents want to be part of the scheme.”

“There have been some burglaries and it is a question of keeping one eye open. You never know, you might see something that helps the police. The police cannot be everywhere all at once.”

The newly formed scheme will work with their local police Safer Neighbourhood Team and will be told about crime and anti-social behaviour in their local area.

Police community support officer Jon Morgan-Jones, who is the police HomeWatch contact for the Acle neighbourhood, said: “Home Watch schemes are run by residents, with police support, and can play an incredibly important role in not just preventing and reducing crime but also giving people peace of mind, knowing their neighbours are looking out for them.

“After the burglary in a nearby road local residents wanted to help themselves and one another. We suggested Homewatch and the benefits which it brings and everyone rallied together and got involved. There was a common feeling that residents wanted to help make the community safer.”

• If you would like to set up a scheme in your area contact Norfolk Constabulary on 0845 456 4567 and ask to speak to your local Homewatch contact.

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