More nosy neighbours will make streets of Spring Boroughs safer, say police

"Personally, I love nosy neighbours."

That's the view of PCSO James Earl, part of the police team that covers Spring Boroughs, who is enthusiastically explaining his It's Yours campaign that encourages people to look out for each other in order to reduce crime.

Spring Boroughs Residents with Castle Ward police team at the launch of It's Yours

Spring Boroughs Residents with Castle Ward police team at the launch of It's Yours

PCSO Earl agrees that the scheme sounds a little bit like traditional neighbourhood watch.

He said: "People we've talked to about It's Yours have said this is how it used to be. Nosy neighbours, curtain twitchers, if you like.

"You can replace nosy with 'active member of the community' but it's the same sort of thing.

"But that's good,I like all that. Seeing a strange face that doesn't fit in or and telling us next time we meet, or not seeing an old lady down the street for a few days and reporting it - it's all good for the area where you live."

Spring Boroughs residents feel comfortable talking to the familiar faces of their local police team

Spring Boroughs residents feel comfortable talking to the familiar faces of their local police team

The initiative, which will in time cover the whole of Castle ward, was launched today (Friday).

PCSO Earl wants to push the back-to-basics principles of habitually taking note of your surroundings because he felt, after new shops houses and buildings built recently in Spring Boroughs, community spirit could also do with a boost.

"I'm not asking for anyone to sit on guard or do anything strenuous.

"When most people walk about their attention levels are maybe at three out of 10. When I'm on duty, I'm probably at an eight. If people could lift themselves to a five or even a six, that's what we're asking for."

PCSO James Earl explains the It's Yours campaign

PCSO James Earl explains the It's Yours campaign

It's Yours also aims to make people ask questions about things they see and take simple but effective actions.

PCSO Earl said: “Whether that’s by closing the door they notice is open, closing and locking gates that should be locked, or by reporting a suspicious vehicle or person to the police, we hope people will begin to feel increased ownership, pride and community spirit in their area - as well as help us tackle crime and nuisance behaviour.”

PCSO Earl works in a team with fellow PCSO James Wetherall, PC Lee Stevens and their 'skipper' Sgt Rodney Williams.

He considers himself lucky that people in Castle Ward are used to seeing uniformed police officers around, and are not afraid to seek out these familiar faces if something is wrong.

From these encounters, the police team are confident residents will be keen to create the sense that people are looking out for each other.

PCSO Earl said: "I want people to think: yes, the flat block belongs to Northampton Partnership Homes but this is my area, this is my home."