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Pictured: One of the Council's new mobile CCTV cameras.

Ten state-of-the-art mobile CCTV cameras have been rolled out across the Falkirk Council area to further boost safety and security in local communities.

Bought by Falkirk Council as part of its c£1m investment in CCTV, the cameras can quickly and easily be moved to hotspot areas of anti-social behaviour and crime.

The mobile cameras provide instantaneous and crystal-clear images that can be used by the police to prosecute those who break the law, as well as provide residents and visitors with peace of mind.

At a meeting of the Executive yesterday (Tuesday, 24 August), Elected Members heard council teams had worked closely with Police Scotland and partners to identify where the mobile cameras should be placed.

They also heard that additional funding secured through Falkirk Community Trust and Zetland Park Project Team would increase the number of mobile cameras in use across the Council area to 15 over the coming months.

Cecil Meiklejohn, Leader of Falkirk Council, said she had been "impressed" by the speed at which the cameras had been rolled out.

She added:

“This is a great example of what can be achieved when we work with our partners to deliver digital transformation at pace. By making this investment in the CCTV service, we continue to support the police in the fight against crime and make our position clear - we will not tolerate anti-social behaviour.”

Investing in public safety

Since agreeing to invest the six-figure sum to upgrade CCTV and install an in-house CCTV/Digital Alarms hub in 2019, much work has been done by the team driving forward the Council of the Future CCTV project.

The CCTV project is one of 31 Council of the Future projects that aim to modernise and improve services and help deliver on Council priorities – CommunitiesEnterprise, and Innovation.

So far, the investment has allowed the team to:

  • put in place a new digital monitoring system
  • start to upgrade fixed CCTV cameras
  • deploy mobile cameras

To date, five state-of-the-art fixed digital cameras have been installed, replacing existing and failing cameras in Falkirk town centre and Camelon. These cameras have already provided evidence to support criminal prosecutions that would otherwise have gone undetected.

By the start of next year, all 61 fixed cameras will be digitally enabled, and 15 mobile cameras rolled out, replacing the grainy images of the past with those that provide pinpoint accuracy.

An old and new CCTV image

Pictured: An old CCTV image (top) compared to an image captured by one of our new digital cameras (bottom).

Partnership working

Work is now underway to secure a new partnership agreement with Police Scotland that would see its contribution to the £240k annual revenue cost of delivering CCTV increase from 13% to 25%. A decision is expected shortly. 

The council will then look to potentially secure additional funding from other bodies that may benefit from the enhanced CCTV services.

Alarm bells

The new CCTV system and the four highly experienced operators who monitor images around the clock are set to move from Falkirk Police Station to the Foundry, the Council's new office space in Larbert, later this year.

Once transferred, work to centralise a raft of out of hours alarms - from fire to flood sensors; premises CCTV to Council building door access - will begin in earnest.

The ultimate goal is to have all council alarm and monitoring systems integrated and controlled from a central location to help keep people safe and reduce costs.

Future innovation

By investing in cutting-edge CCTV technology, the Council will not only be able to help reduce crime and anti-social behaviour, but in the future use the cameras to:

  • support traffic management by providing real-time updates on traffic congestion via social media
  • increase public safety at major events, from festivals to football matches
  • support tourism by beaming live images of famous local landmarks such as the Kelpies worldwide

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