Fakenham’s mayor has appealed for the town’s closed circuit television system not to be left a “toothless tiger”.
Adrian Vertigan spoke after a meeting was called on Tuesday to gauge public concern about North Norfolk District Council proposals to cut costs by making savings on security cameras in five towns.
Mr Vertigan said the town council and the general public did not want to lose the CCTV system or see it become a “reactive” service only monitored at the request of the police.
“It would be a toothless tiger,” he said.
He pointed out that the existing CCTV operators had a great wealth of experience which was useful when tracking people with ASBOs or helping to find lost children.
The meeting was attended by district councillor Rhodri Oliver who said: “It was a quite a constructive meeting. “I hope it was useful. People at the meeting don’t want to lose the service and they made that clear.”
The CCTV service provided by the district council costs £200,000 a year to run for Fakenham (18 cameras), Cromer (10), North Walsham (8), Sheringham (6), and Wells (4).
The council is seeking to close an expected £1 million gap in its budget and is due to decide on Monday whether to scrap the system or save about £65,000, either by changing to a reactive system or reducing operator hours and using wireless technology.
Mr Oliver said views put forward at the meeting would be taken into account and Mr Vertigan said the district council’s decision would be fully discussed by the town council on Tuesday.
North Norfolk Policing Commander, Supt Stuart Gunn, said: “Public and commercial CCTV can be a useful additional tool in the prevention and detection of crime, and can provide reassurance to the public. We are aware of the North Norfolk District Council review of their CCTV service and will continue to liaise with them as they look at future options.”