MORE than £2 million has been secured to tackle violence against women and girls, rural crime and anti-social behaviour in Gloucestershire.

The money comes from a pot of funding known as the Safer Streets Fund – an initiative from the Home Office now in its fourth round of funding.

Gloucestershire’s Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner submitted three separate successful bids, covering the topics of VAWG, Neighbourhood Crime and Anti-Social Behaviour.

The primary bid of £749,124 will be used to tackle anti-social behaviour including:

• Six PCSOs – one for each district to deal with low-level ASB

• A children’s education project designed to facilitate restorative conversations at a primary school level

• Outreach and diversionary activities for young people intervention

• Support to prevent street drinking in Gloucester and Cheltenham

• Funding to help roll-out Solace – an ASB project – in rural parts of the county

The second bid focuses on tackling neighbourhood crime with £591,705 to provide solutions such as:

• Better software for witnesses to upload digital doorbell footage to police

• A new fleet of drones to support rural communities

• 32 rural ANPR cameras along with technician support

• Enhanced forensic testing in relation to neighbourhood crimes such as burglary

• Rural crime prevention tactics

The final bid is on tackling Violence Against Women and Girls (VAWG) through techniques including:

• Educational theatre on the topic of stalking

• Funding for personal safety apps and alarms

• Expansion of a local Sex Worker Outreach Programme

• New drug testing machines to tackle spiking, and

• Additional presence in the night-time economy through Street Medics, Night Safe Officers and Street Pastors.

Chris Nelson, Gloucestershire’s Police and Crime Commissioner said: “I am delighted that all three of our bids were successful, bringing over £2 million of Government money into Gloucestershire.

"These bids are full of progressive and engaging ideas to help prevent crime as well as operational support and equipment which will allow officers to work more efficiently."

Local authorities, the British Transport Police and certain civil society organisations are also eligible to lead bids.

However in Gloucestershire, all three bids were curated and submitted by the office of the PCC.