Oxford Neighbourhood Watch and Community Information Weekly Newsletter 17-10-21
Alert message sent 19/10/2021 21:17:00
Information sent on behalf of Neighbourhood Watch
Oxford Neighbourhood Watch and Community Newsletter 17-10-21
collated by Maggie Lewis - Voluntary Area Representative and Administrator for Oxford Neighbourhood Watch.
Please can I ask you to look at these articles with important information for the community in Oxford.
Urgent food recalls from supermarkets (long list)
Community Speed Watch (important update)
Ten Fire Safety Tips (that could save lives)
Please share and care.
This weekly newsletter is for reading and/or sharing in entirety or copying and pasting.
The index is available so you can read all or just the items of interest. Items are collated and taken from surfing the web, social media, articles, emails and conversations. Contributions will be gratefully received.
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1) Main aims
Oxford Neighbourhood Watch
1) Simply Safer (attachment)
Thames Valley Police
1) Witness Appeal - Headington
2) Wanted Man (attachment)
3) Witness Appeal - Magdalen Road, East Oxford
Neighbourhood Policing Teams
Oxford North East
1) Safer Streets
2) PCSO Ahmed Mohamed (award)
3) Neighbourhood Team
Cowley and Wood Farm
1) Templars Square Shopping Centre
2) Neighbourhood Team
1) Action Fraud
2) County Line Awareness Video
3) Anti-Slavery Day
4) Project Vigilant (attachment)
5) Installation of new CCTV in Oxford
6) Crime Stoppers
1) Home Security
1) Friends Against Scams
2) Antivirus scams
3) Reporting Suspicious emails and texts
Oxford City Council
1) Best Team of the Year Award
2) ODS Rising Stars Award
1) Top Ten Tips for Fire safety
2) Tyre Safety Month
3) Malnutrition Awareness Week
4) Tips to stay warm in winter
1) Main Aims
The main aims of our Neighbourhood Watch schemes are:
To enable members to reduce the opportunities for crime and to make it more difficult for criminal activity in their neighbourhood.
To reduce the fear of crime, and pass on crime information and other important messages from the police and Neighbourhood Watch
To encourage the reporting of crime or suspicious activity directly to the police or through CrimeStoppers.
To foster a caring, neighbourly attitude to improve the wider resilience and friendliness of the areas we cover.
To help inform the public at large how to stay safe and improve the safety of our communities.
OXFORD NEIGHBOURHOOD WATCH
1)Simply Safer (attachment)
We need more Neighbourhood Watch Coordinators to set up schemes in your roads or for your groups, with all the lovely community spirit and neighbours getting to know one another more since the lockdowns, it's the ideal time to set up a Neighbourhood Watch scheme in part or all of your road. If you would like me to send you details of how to set up a scheme or if you have any other queries, please use reply icon at the bottom of the Alert. With email now or by setting up a closed Facebook or WhatsApp Group, it is so easy to forward the Police/NW/Action Fraud Alerts to your neighbours. Neighbourhood Watch signs, stickers and leaflets are free plus all neighbours receive various national and local discounts. It is important for more schemes to be set up as this will help combat crime and make the community a safer place to live.
THAMES VALLEY POLICE
1) Witness Appeal (Headington)
A CYCLIST threw his bike at a van and shouted racial abuse at the driver after a crash.
The incident happened in Kiln Lane in Headington at around 12.25pm last Tuesday when a van collided with the cyclist who then caused criminal damage by throwing their bike multiple times onto the van's bonnet, punching and kicking the vehicle.
The cyclist then directed racial abuse towards the driver before cycling off again.
The cyclist is described as a white man, around 5ft 8ins tall and of slim build.
He was wearing black glasses, a green jacket with a yellow lining and had a blue backpack. His bike was a racing bike with white handles.
Thames Valley Police is appealing for witnesses, CCTV and dash-cam footage.
Investigating Officer, PC Matthew Hamilton based at Oxford police station, said: “We are appealing for witnesses or anyone with information to please come forward following this incident.
“If you have any information, CCTV or dash-cam footage from around the time of the incident, please contact us via the online form on our website or call 101 and quote reference 43210448263.
“Alternatively, you can call the independent charity Crimestoppers 100% anonymously on 0800 555 111.”
2) Magdalen Road violent disorder (CCTV image attachments)
Thames Valley Police is releasing CCTV images of three individuals officers would like to speak to in connection with a violent disorder in Oxford.
At around 1.25pm on Friday 8 October, a group of men were involved in an altercation on Magdalen Road, near to Shiny car wash.
Some of the men were armed with weapons.
Investigating officer, Detective Constable Archie Coyne, based at St Aldates police station, said: “I am appealing for the men in these images to come forward as I believe they have information about this incident.
“If you recognise these men, or if it is you in one of these images, please contact police by calling 101 or making a report online, quoting reference 43210453706.
“Alternatively, if you wish to remain anonymous, you can contact the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 or via their website.”:
Update- Two men have been charged in connection with this investigation. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for details.
3) Wanted man (attachment)
Thames Valley Police is appealing to trace a wanted man from Abingdon.
Kyran McFarlane, aged 31, is wanted in connection with an incident in Culham Road Abingdon on 9 October.
Officers found a man with a weapon in a black BMW. When officers tried to talk to the man he assaulted one of them and made off in the vehicle.
McFarlane is approximately 5ft 9inches tall with short, black hair and a beard. He has a scar on his left eyebrow.
He is also known to frequent Blackbird Leys, Wheatley and North Oxford.
Investigating officer, Detective Constable Chloe Arnott, based at Abingdon police station, said: “I would appeal to anyone who has seen McFarlane, or has information on his whereabouts to please come forward.
“If you see him, please do not approach him and call 999 instead.
“If you have information about where he may be, please call 101 quoting reference 43210454995, or make a report online.
“Alternatively, you can call the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 for 100% anonymity while reporting.”
NEIGHBOURHOOD POLICING TEAMS
Oxford North East
1) TVP Safer Streets
TVP Safer Streets in the partnership with Oxford Brookes University organised bike and property marking event out of John Henry Brookes building in Headington.
Oxford Northeast Neighbourhood Police team passed crime prevention advice and leaflets while property marking.
2) PCSO Ahmed Mohamed
An Alert message was sent out to recruit PCSOs across Thames Valley and this is what our own Oxford PCSO had to say who is part of the Oxford North East neighbourhood policing team.
PCSO Ahmed Mohamed, length in service – 4 and ½ years: “I knew I wanted to do something working in and around people – when I saw the advert for PCSO it seemed to fit. There are lots of opportunity in TVP to progress and get involved if you want to develop yourself; You don’t need a high rank or long service to help encourage positive change and have a voice at TVP.”
I am sure we would all like to congratulate him on been named as TVP’s Diversity Champion for our Community Policing Awards 2020
3) Neighbourhood Team
Acting Police Sergeant David Vermeulen
PC Jon Kelly
PCSO Annabel White
PCSO Connor Davies
PCSO Ahmed Mohamed
Cowley and Wood Farm
1) 13/10 - The Cowley Neighbourhood Policing Team had a stand in Templars Square Shopping Centre engaging with the public.
Steve Why P2560
Matthew Goodchild PC0944
Simon Collins PC1551
Jack Sear C9060
Rebecca Huxtable C9950
Liam Silcock C9626
Paul Timms C9872
Janet Billingham C9251
1) Action Fraud
Recent media coverage has reported that Action Fraud is going to be closed down, so causing alarm to victims of fraud.
The City of London Police is the national lead for fraud and it works closely with partners and other law enforcement agencies to provide a linked up national policing response. They have said that the Action Fraud system will remain in operation while they procure a new fraud and cybercrime reporting and analysis service. This new service is being procured in recognition of advances to technology and growing demand on the service. In the meantime, they will continue to make improvements to the existing system.
2) County Line awareness video
This is a 10 minute You Tube video that explains County line drug dealing and how it can be happening in your community- no area is safe from this. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DdYq2dhQ3qc
3) Anti-Slavery Day
Monday 18 October marks Anti-Slavery Day, an opportunity to raise awareness of human trafficking and modern slavery. Unfortunately, slavery is still widely prevalent in our society, and could be happening right under your nose, in your street or neighbourhood. It’s a hidden crime happening in plain sight across the UK. The Global Slavery Index estimates that Britain is home to around 136,000 victims of modern slavery, far surpassing the government’s own statistics.
Modern Slavery has many forms, from being forced to carry out manual tasks such as domestic work or labouring for little or no money to criminal and sexual exploitation. Many victims are often trafficked and are forced to live in fear in squalid conditions under the constant threat of violence and intimidation.
You could be closer to Modern Slavery than you think! Download the Unseen UK App today to play your part in ending modern slavery. The app provides a simple guide to recognising the signs and you can easily pinpoint the suspected locations and connect to the Modern Slavery Helpline.
4) Project Vigilant (attachment)
The latest Project Vigilant results since the re-opening of the night-time economy on Friday 23 July.
Project Vigilant has been operating in Oxford, Reading, Milton Keynes and Windsor.
The initiative uses a combination of uniformed and plain clothed officers to carry out patrols in areas outside night clubs, bars and pubs, to identify people who may be displaying signs of predatory behaviour, such as sexual harassment, inappropriate touching and loitering.
Plain clothed officers who identify this kind of behaviour will contact the dedicated Project Vigilant uniformed officers who will stop those identified and take positive action to discourage this behaviour, which may include arrest.
Thames Valley Police was awarded £90,000 of Home Office funding to fund a dedicated Sergeant to coordinate Project Vigilant across the force and commission an academic evaluation by Brighton University into the effectiveness of the project and the impact on future offending. The evaluation is currently ongoing and will allow us to have a better understanding of public confidence and how the force can improve engagement.
Project Vigilant has contributed to a reduction in sexual offences linked to the night-time economy in the four areas running the initiative. Between 23 July and 5 October 2021, compared to the same dates in 2019, there has been a 12.5% decrease in sexual violence in public spaces linked to the night-time economy. There has also been a 77% reduction in stranger rapes linked to the night-time economy.
In addition to this, 99 people across Oxford, Reading, Milton Keynes and Windsor have been stopped and nine arrests have been made in relation to predatory behaviour.
Detective Chief Inspector James Senior, the force lead for Project Vigilant, said: “We launched Project Vigilant in 2019 and, following these latest statistics, it is reassuring to see that it is contributing to reducing the number of sexual offences in the night-time economy, ensuring we are able to protect and safeguard our communities.
“Retaining the public’s trust and confidence in the police is particularly vital at the moment and Project Vigilant is just one way in which the force is working hard to do this.
“We’ve stopped 99 people in this time period for varying degrees of predatory behaviour which included unwanted contact towards women and harassment. By us taking positive action against this type of behaviour, we’re making it clear that it will not be tolerated. Everyone stopped and arrested as part of this initiative is considered for further action or support to address their behaviour.
“We are committed to continuing this project with our partners in order to make our communities safer and prevent offences from taking place.”
5) Installation of new CCTV
New mobile CCTV cameras will be installed and switched on in Oxford on Tuesday (12/10) as part of Safer Streets funding.
In July 2020, the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner of the Thames Valley secured Safer Streets funding to tackle specific crime types, including bicycle theft, in hotspot areas across Oxford city to stop offences that have a significant impact on our local communities and cause considerable inconvenience and distress to many victims.
As part of this funding, four new CCTV cameras will operate in seven new locations in Cowley Road, Divinity Road, Morrell Avenue and Union Street. The new CCTV cameras will be mobile and can be moved amongst the seven new locations as required. The cameras will feed into the existing CCTV control room and will be monitored by trained CCTV operators.
The cameras will help reduce opportunistic crime and will provide extra security and safety for people in the city.
Got information about a crime and want to help, but don’t want anyone to know?
Crimestoppers Trust is an independent crime-fighting charitable organisation in the United Kingdom. Crimestoppers operates the 0800 555 111 telephone number, allowing people to call anonymously to pass on information about crime.
Improving your home security reduces the chance of you becoming the victim of a burglar so make sure your home is secure.
What to do before you leave your home:
· Close and lock all your doors and windows, even if you are only going out for a few minutes.
· Always make sure your house looks occupied. In the evening, shut the curtains and leave some lights on.
· Set your burglar alarm.
· Make sure the side and/or back gate is locked.
· Lock your shed or garage.
· Use automatic timer-switches to turn a light on after dark so that your home appears occupied. This is particularly important during the winter months when the days are much shorter.
· Put keys out of reach of letterboxes.
· Keys should always be kept out of sight and not left in doors or in view of windows
· In the evening, shut the curtains and leave some lights on.
· Invest in a CCTV doorbell.
· Never leave car documents or ID in obvious places such as kitchens or hallways.
Never keep large amounts of cash at home and make sure that any valuables are not in sight.
Friends Against Scams (social media)
Friends Against Scams is celebrating its 5th anniversary this October!
The team will be running a social media campaign between 18th – 22nd October, which will celebrate the achievements made over the past five years.
Some of these include reaching over 800,000 Friends as well as launching different initiatives like Scam Marshals, Young Friends, SCAMchampions, Businesses Against Scams and Utilities Against Scams.
The campaign will also be a perfect opportunity to thank partners, organisations and the general public for their incredible support throughout the years.
Make sure you are part of this celebration by following us on:
If you want more information please check their excellent website https://www.friendsagainstscams.org.uk/
Friends Against Scams is a National Trading Standards Scams Team initiative, which aims to protect and prevent people from becoming victims of scams by empowering people to take a stand against scams.
2) Phishing alert:
Fake McAfee and Norton Antivirus emails
Fake emails are currently circulating posing as McAfee and Norton Antivirus informing people that their subscriptions are at an end and need renewing. The emails ask you to click through on links in order to ‘renew the subscriptions’. Some even attempt to trick you into contacting the scammers using the details at the bottom of the email.
Continue to report phishing emails
You can report phishing email attempts to Action Fraud or you can send them on directly to the National Cyber Security Centre at email@example.com.
If you think you may have fallen victim to a phishing email, let your bank know what’s happened straight away.
3) Reporting Suspicious emails and texts
Please report all suspicious emails and texts and yours can help to remove scans.
Update on reporting suspicious emails (April 2020-September 2021)
As of 30th September 2021 the number of reports received stand at more than 7,700,000 with the removal of more than 64,000 scams and 119,000 URLs.
Please report suspicious emails to firstname.lastname@example.org and texts to 7726
OXFORD CITY COUNCIL (from social media)
1) Recycling and Waste Services
Best Team of the Year Award
Congratulations to all at waste services who have done a fantastic job during the most challenging times.
Maria Warner Best team of the year ODS Oxford City Council waste services at LARAC awards... I was absolutely shocked and honoured to receive this on behalf of our team and all those involved! it's been an immensely tough time, but the commitment and dedication of our team has been amazing. as have many others!! Thank you all and thank you
*LARAC= Local Authority Recycling Advisory Committee
* ODS= Oxford Direct Services
Maria Warner is the Oxford Direct Services Waste and Recycling Services Manager
2) Award success for two ODS rising stars
ODS’ Recycling Project Coordinator Laura Paterson and Recycling Project Officer Bill Byfield, were singled out as rising stars with a ‘35 Under 35’ award in September. Bill and Laura were awarded their 35 under 35 status for professional excellence, promoting industry innovation and giving back to ODS, Oxford City Council, and the community.
Award success for two Oder 35’ award in September.
OXFORDSHIRE COUNTY COUNCIL
1) Important reporting website https://fixmystreet.oxfordshire.gov.uk/
FixMyStreet is primarily for reporting things which are broken or dirty or damaged or dumped, and need fixing, cleaning or clearing, like graffiti, dog fouling, potholes or street lights that don't work.
1) Urgent recalls from supermarkets (long list)
Major UK supermarkets are urging you to return these products due to health warnings
.2) Oxford Women's Hub
Oxford Women’s Hub will be starting Thursday October 14th 11.00am to 1.00pm, no need to book!
We will be offering female-tailored advice from numerous agencies including; housing, health, drug and alcohol support, family, workshops, finance and debt management, cooking classes, DV support and practical and emotional support.
Travel expenses can be reimbursed for public travel in Oxford.
3) Oxford Half Marathon Road Closures 17th October- Oxford Bus Services
On Sunday 17th October 2021, the Oxford Half Marathon will take place in and around central Oxford. With a number of road closures associated with this event, our city2, city35, cityX3 and park&ride300/500 services will be subject to diversions from 08:00 until 14:30 hrs, and therefore we will be unable to serve a few stops in the area.
All the usual city2 services stops on Banbury Road (in both directions) will not be served.
Buses will instead travel from Magdalen Street via St Giles, Woodstock Road (serving all stops), Wolvercote Roundabout and Sunderland Avenue to resume normal route at Banbury Road.
Services towards Oxford will follow the same diversion in reverse, but will set passengers down at the Randolph Hotel stop on Beaumont Street.
cityX3 services will be unable to serve the stops on Oxford Road or Cherwell Drive (in both directions) for the duration of the road closure in Marston. Your cityX3 services will therefore travel straight from Marston Road to Headley Way.
Passengers are advised to use the Crotch Crescent or Copse Lane stops as alternatives.
city35 services travelling from Oxford towards Wolvercote will not be affected.
Towards Oxford and Kennington, Radley and Abingdon, park&ride300 services will be unable to serve the George Street stops A1 and A5. Buses will therefore set passengers down at the Randolph Hotel stop on Beaumont Street. Passengers are advised to use the stop D2 located on New Road as an alternative.
park&ride300 services travelling from Oxford will not be affected.
Towards Oxford and Redbridge, park&ride300 will be unable to serve the George Street stops A1 and A5. Buses will therefore set passengers down at the Randolph Hotel stop on Beaumont Street.
For park&ride300 towards Redbridge, passengers are advised to use the stops at Westgate.
All the usual park&ride500 stops on Banbury Road (in both directions) will not be served.
Buses will instead travel from Magdalen Street via St Giles, Woodstock Road (serving Radcliffe Observatory, St Margaret’s Road, Lathbury Road, Beech Croft Road, South Parade and Squitchey Lane stops), Wolvercote Roundabout and Sunderland Avenue to resume normal route at Banbury Road.
Services towards Oxford will follow the same diversion in reverse, but will set passengers down at the Randolph Hotel stop on Beaumont Street and travel via Worcester Street to Park End Street, where normal route will be resumed. As a result, park&ride500 services will also be unable to serve the George Street stops A1 and A5.
1) Fire Service Top ten tips
1 Fit smoke alarms on each level in your home and test them regularly.
2) Be prepared by making a plan of escape and ensure everyone in the household knows what to do
3)Take care in the kitchen and never leave cooking unattended especially when cooking with hot oil. It can catch fire easily.
4)Keep matches and lighters out of reach of children
5) Do not overload electrical sockets. Try and keep to one plug per socket and check for faulty frayed wiring.
6) Be careful with candles and tea lights make sure they are secured in a proper holder and away from materials that may catch fire, like curtains.
7) Get “key clever”. Keys for windows and doors should be kept in an easy to find place where everyone can find them. This is so you can get out in an event of a fire. Make sure everyone in the household knows where the keys are.
8) Before bedtime check that all appliances are off, especially dishwashers and washing machines. Close all internal doors as this could stop a fire from spreading and save your life.
9) Stub cigarettes out properly and dispose of them carefully, it’s easy to forget this when you’re tired or have drunk alcohol and never smoke in bed.
10) Don’t leave items on charge or plugged in overnight or whilst you are out of the house and never leave plugged in and turned on when they are not in use.
2) October is Tyre Safety Month,
Regular tyre safety checks reduce the risks of an incident while on the roads but an estimated one-in-five drivers have never checked the tread on their tyres, a startling number which rises to one-in-three among young drivers. Checking and maintaining tyres also reduces the cost of motoring as underinflated tyres will wear quicker and cause the vehicle to use more fuel.
Air Pressure – correct tyre pressures are shown on a sticker in your car’s door shut, filler cap or in the owner’s manual. Use an accurate pressure gauge to ensure they are right for the load as part of your pre-journey planning
Condition – if stones or other objects caught between grooves in the tread can be removed without damaging the tyre, drivers are advised to do so. Bulges, cracks, cuts and embedded objects are cause for concern and need to be checked by a professional
Tread – if you don’t have access to an accurate tread depth gauge, a 20p coin can be used to see if your tyres’ tread depths are approaching the 1.6mm minimum limit. Insert the 20p at several points across and around each tyre. If you can see the coin’s outer rim at any point the tyre may be illegal and you should seek advice from a professional.
3) Malnutrition Awareness Week
This week is Malnutrition Awareness Week (MAW) which aims to raise awareness of the prevalence, signs, symptoms and consequences of malnutrition in older age.
It is led by the Malnutrition Task Force who believe that good nutrition and hydration is vital to enabling older people to live fulfilling and independent lives. We know that before COVID19 the risk of malnutrition in the community was a huge problem for older people. 1 in 10 people over the age of 65 are malnourished or at risk of malnutrition.
Signs to look out for:
Have you noticed that they have lost weight?
Have they dropped a dress size or do their clothes feel looser?
Has their appetite got smaller?
Do they feel cold and can’t get warm?
Do they feel dizzy sometimes?
Have you noticed changes in their mood?
Are they feeling down?
Have their dentures become loose?
Is chewing difficult?
Is swallowing difficult?
For tips that might help, see https://www.malnutritiontaskforce.org.uk/eating-well-tips-everybody/what-can-we-do
Tips for winter warmth and wellbeing
The nights are drawing in and it is getting colder
Age UK has an excellent site for staying healthy and warm this winter (for all ages!)
Message sent by
Maggie Lewis (Neighbourhood Watch Network, Multi Scheme Administrator, Thames Valley, Oxford LPA)