|Update From Wandsworth Borough Commander
"Extremely proud of the consistent hard work and determination I have seen"
I have now been at Wandsworth for a little over four months and I am extremely proud of the consistent hard work and determination I have seen from the officers and staff on the borough and from our partners in other agencies and the communities we serve.
This month sees some changes to the management team at Wandsworth. Detective Superintendent Penny Banham leaves the borough to join our colleagues in Aviation Security, based at Heathrow Airport. Penny led Wandsworth CID through the implementation of the Local Policing Model and was a driving force behind many of the successes our detectives have had over the past 18 months. I wish her luck in her new posting at the airport.
Penny’s replacement is Detective Supt Pete Laverick. Pete knows Wandsworth very well, having worked in the CID here earlier in his service. He brings a wealth of policing experience, which includes time spent within the Anti-Corruption Command, a period with Sussex Police and his most recent posting within the Met’s Central Licencing Unit.
I am also delighted to welcome back Supt Paul McGregor, returning from a post as temporary Borough Commander at Hounslow for the past four months. Paul’s experience on the borough will be invaluable as we work to ensure that Wandsworth remains one of the safest inner London boroughs and becomes safer still.
Further staff changes follow the success of eight candidates in the recent PC to sergeant promotion process and my congratulations go to sergeants Dan Wray, Alison Edwards, Mehul Patel, Jason McElroy, Simon Chappell, Steve Dorrington, Scott Moxham and David Singleton. Twelve new sergeants will be posted to the borough next month and they will be a welcome addition to our leadership team.
The pivotal role of our sergeants, inspectors and their police staff equivalents is recognised by the Met’s Management Board and all our front line supervisors are attending the Commissioner’s Leadership Events. These events include an input from Marc Woods (winner of four Paralympic Gold medals) and I was fortunate enough to see his inspiring presentation on motivation and “being the best we can be” last month.
Last but not least, our most recent batch of probationary constables has begun their training under the leadership of Battersea’s Neighbourhood Inspector, James Ellis. In total, the borough will receive 65 new probationers this summer, which is a considerable boost to our neighbourhood policing teams. The intention of Chief Inspector Steve McSorley, is to have officers at as many local community events as possible this summer, to maximise opportunities to hear from local people and understand how we can continue to make Wandsworth even safer.
June saw the first of our community confidence meetings at the Town Hall. Representatives of older Wandsworth residents discussed methods to improve local confidence, which include changes to our probationers’ training and consideration of how to make local policing more visible.
Next month, I am looking forward to hearing ideas from the borough’s youth population on how to improve their confidence in the police. A key issue will be the use of stop and search as a policing tactic; I am grateful to receive regular advice and oversight of this issue from Wandsworth’s independent stop and search scrutiny panel and our Independent Advisory Group. I hope that they will be able to send representation to the meeting to assist the discussion.
Improving community confidence is a vital element of our plans to make Wandsworth even safer for everyone living, working or visiting here and everyone can have a role in preventing crime on the borough. This month we have started to see an increase in the number of mopeds stolen locally and I ask that anyone who owns a moped (or knows someone who does) takes heed of basic crime prevention advice to deter would-be thieves.
Longer evenings and warmer weather provide an opportunity for everyone to enjoy Wandsworth’s parks, open spaces and entertainment venues. Our intention is to ensure that all our communities are able to enjoy Wandsworth in safety and I remain extremely grateful to all the local partners who assist us with our efforts.
Ch Supt Richard Smith
July 14th 2014