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Caught on camera: New Preston CCTV cameras may speak to suspected troublemakers

Posted on - 2nd August, 2015 - 8:00am | Author - | Posted in - Crime, News, Preston City Centre
A CCTV system in Preston city centre

A CCTV system in Preston city centre Pic: Tony Worrall

CCTV cameras which talk to potential troublemakers on the streets could be part of further investment in Preston city centre security.

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Preston Business Improvement District has ring-fenced a further £100,000 to extend the camera system in the city.

It would see cameras monitor areas such as Winckley Square for the first time and amend existing cameras to use radio transmitters for power rather than cabling.

Branded as “intervention technologies” the cameras could be fitted with personal address speakers allowing staff in the control room to speak directly to people on the streets.

BID chairman John Boydell said: “This is a real contribution to the city centre and it is demonstrable.

“To ensure Preston city centre continues to remain a safe place to invest, work and visit, programmes like this are key, and we are delighted that the BID has led this project allowing it to move forward.

“Our scheme will see revolutionary new technologies embraced to ensure Preston continues to be at the forefront of public safety and with the minimal amount of disruption.

“This also means that, due to the cameras being operated via a radio frequency, we can bring in temporary cameras if we identify a need, for instance when there is a major event taking place, which can be installed and removed with ease.”

The funding is on top of £85,000 spent in March on upgrading the CCTV cameras to digital and money for improving taxi ranks.

Campaign group No CCTV said in March the increased use of CCTV cameras was dangerous for society.

Charles Farrier said: “Lazy, populist politicians continue to claim that CCTV cameras are a silver bullet, but research shows that cameras have a damaging effect on communities by increasing fear and reducing trust.”

What do you think of the expansion of CCTV? And the idea of ones which include speakers? Let us know in the comments below

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