More than 130 people apply to safeguard Northampton clubbers in India Chipchase's name

A community response team is assembling 'guardians' to patrol Northampton's busiest night spots, as part of a move led by the mum of late India Chipchase.

Monday, 3rd December 2018, 2:31 pm
Updated Wednesday, 9th January 2019, 8:20 am
Over 100 volunteers have signed up to safeguard Northampton in memory of the late India Chipchase.

The India Protocol, which was set up by the Cheltenham Guardians, is a "common sense advanced safeguarding system" that has increased the safety and security of lone women in Cheltenham's night time economy.

Last month the Cheltenham Guardians team met with Northamptonshire Police and borough council chiefs in a bid to introduce the scheme here in town, which will be led by India's mum Sue Poynter.

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Since the Chronicle & Echo's article in October the Cheltenham Guardians has received 130 applications for India Protocol volunteers in Northampton - and a chosen minority will start their training at the end of December.

Founder of the Cheltenham Guardians Terry Howard said: "The introduction of a specialist integrated urban safeguarding team into an established and well-managed night-time economy is no small task."

The safeguarding scheme was set up in memory of the late India Chipchase who was murdered, aged 20, back in 2016 after she was on a night out in Bridge Street.

This comes only a few months after the new vulnerability centre was officially opened on the site of the Platform Club – giving peace of mind to an entire town.

In January 2017 the Chron launched a campaign to urge authorities to provide a well-lit and warm haven for party-goers who might suddenly feel vulnerable on a night out in Northampton.

The Northampton Guardians would be a service reliant upon a team of volunteers and would receive no official forms of funding.

Terry added: "Going forward it is crucial that we are able to interface with existing service providers for the benefit of our service users and the wider community.

"We very much look forward to realising our goal of establishing a permanent presence in Northampton and emulating the remarkable success we have achieved in Cheltenham."