Committee rejects call to fund ‘Face Watch’ crackdown

News.
News.

A scheme which aims to kick troublemakers out of Boston’s High Street has had an application for £1,000 rejected by a committee.

Dan Forman, chairman of Boston Shopwatch, approached the Boston Town Area Committee (BTAC) on Wednesday asking for £1,000 towards the £1090 subscription costs for its Face Watch scheme. The scheme shares mugshots of known troublemakers between member shops.

Mr Forman said: “Although its only £1 a week we want to get it as low as possible so all types of business can get involved. Some of the larger ones are resistant to supporting local groups when there’s a cost.”

However, councillors raised several concerns with some querying what would happen when the subscription was up for renewal. Others were unhappy at supporting larger chains. Coun Carol Taylor suggested getting bigger shops to sponsor smaller ones.

Coun Derek Richmond said: “It seems to me that they’re coming to this committee to ask for council tax payers money to protect their shops.”

Mr Forman said they were looking to encourage more businesses to sign up to cut the subscription further.

He said: “There’s a possibility of it not getting off the ground. There was a shopwatch scheme years ago which had lots of businesses but the way it was built up didn’t work very well. Looking forward for our scheme we’re gradually trying to get it built up.”

The subscription has been previously supported by the Police and Crime Commissioner Alan Hardwick and Shopwatch continues to work with Lincolnshire Police.

Speaking after the meetin Mr Forman said: “It’s disappointing that they (BTAC) couldn’t help but we’ll see what other options are available to the group.”

He said the scheme was still waiting to hear back from bigger businesses, adding it took time for applications to go through.

He said he might go back to BTAC in the future and work with them if they could find a way to promote the scheme together.

BTAC aims to support initiatives that have a direct benefit that have a direct benefit and positive impact on Boston’s town centre.