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Recent updates

  • Article: Sep 16, 2019

    Wiltshire police's knives amnesty and knife crime prevention fortnight, starts today (Monday 16 September).

    As part of Op Sceptre - the national knife crime prevention initiative co-ordinating ways to tackle knife crime - they want people to hand in unwanted or illegal knives and bladed weapons during the period of the amnesty: Monday 16 - Sunday 29 September.

    Recorded knife crime figures for Wiltshire are increasing; between June 2018 and June 2019 the county saw a rise of 7%, thoughknife crime is only 0.63% of all recorded crime in this period.

    Special amnesty bins are available at 9 locations across the county, with some also in Swindon.
    The locations are:
    Marlborough Police Station
    Melksham Police Station
    St Andrews Church, Melksham
    Monkton Park, Chippenham
    Trowbridge Police Station
    St James Church, Trowbridge
    St James Church, Devizes
    Bourne Hill, Salisbury
    SP2 Community Centre, Salisbury

    The knife amnesty gives people the chance to dispose of knives and weapons by simply taking them to one of the specified police stations, churches or community centres and dropping them in to an amnesty bin; those handing in knives and weapons will not face prosecution for possession of a knife or weapon and can remain anonymous.

    Assistant Chief Constable Maggie Blyth said: "We want to raise the awareness of the dangers of carrying a knife or owning an illegal weapon.

    "Wiltshire cannot be compared to what is happening in the more urban areas of Britain but we are never complacent; we must let the public know what we can do to remove knives from our streets.

    "Carrying a knife should not be considered the norm. Fortunately in Wiltshire very few choose to leave the house with a knife or blade, and sadly the reality is that those who do are more likely to be involved in a violent act or be injured.

    "Education is key, and we need to be passing this on to our children that it's never OK to carry a knife.

    "If you need one for work then you should minimise the time you have it on your person and only keep it for the purposes of work.

    "We hope this fortnight will give people a chance to safely dispose of knives they no longer use and think about the knives or weapons they may have in their property. People may not know that a knife hung up in the shed is illegal or haven't considered the risk of an ornamental knife they own.

    "During the amnesty we are also encouraging people to hand in illegal knives such as zombie knives, butterfly knives, flick knives, machetes and lock knives. This is a chance to avoid prosecution by disposing of knives safely in an amnesty bin.

    "Please do the right thing to help keep Wiltshire safe."

    Angus Macpherson, Police and Crime Commissioner for Wiltshire and Swindon, said: "As we have seen in the news, knife crime wrecks lives - not only the life of the victim but their families and friends. Directly and indirectly there are many people whose lives can be destroyed just because of one incident - it's not just the victim and perpetrator who are affected.

    "The success of last year's amnesty means this is great way to encourage people to do the right thing and hand in any illegal weapons. Even one knife off the streets is one less that can be used to harm or threaten our communities.

    "The reality is that the police cannot tackle this alone and need to draw upon those same communities to play an equal part; people giving the police intelligence and information to help them build a case against individuals and subsequently tackle the issue.

    "Parents and schools can also do their bit by checking what their children are carrying in their bags; it's a good way to educate youngsters too that being caught with a knife could mean they end up in serious trouble as well as risking being injured themselves.

    "Wiltshire is a safe county and together with good education and prevention we can continue to keep it that way."

    Anyone handing in a knife or weapon during the amnesty is advised to check the opening times of their nearest bin by visiting the Wiltshire Police website or calling 101.
    If you have information about someone who carries a knife or is involved knife crimes please call 101 or 999 in an emergency. Information can also be left anonymously via Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

  • Article: Sep 10, 2019
    By LDEG

    Whilst the headlines have focused on the tumultuous events in Westminster, last week marked an important moment in Brussels as the MEPs returned to the Parliament. Since their election, our Liberal Democrat MEPs have been at the heart of the action in the European Parliament and leading the campaign to Stop Brexit.

  • Gitar
    Article: Sep 9, 2019
    By WRM

    Have you always wanted to play but been waiting for the right moment to give it a go? Has your acoustic been gathering dust for years? Or are you picking up the instrument again after a long time away? Whatever your reasons for coming along, these are extremely good value classes, with no more than five students per class. With each lesson lasting 45mins, you also get more for your money than with the normal half-hour session.

  • Article: Sep 9, 2019

    In an open letter to MPs, three Health organisations - The King's Fund, the Health Foundation and Nuffield Trust, - have summarised the areas where the impact of a no deal Brexit could be felt most sharply in health and care.

    These are:

    One: Staffing. The current problems would be exacerbated by emigration, financial uncertainty, and the 'hostile environment' towards foreigners.

  • Article: Sep 5, 2019

    The Chancellor has announced a £2.9bn increase in 'local government spending capacity', to include £1.5bn for social care. What this means is that councils will be permitted to put an extra 2% on the Council Tax (CT) on top of the normal increase. Because of the drastic underfunding of care services local authorities are likely to impose the tax increase.

  • Article: Sep 4, 2019
    By WC (edited)

    Residents of Coulston, Bratton, Edington, Dilton Marsh, Heywood and Hawkeridge are being encouraged to cast their votes in the Wiltshire Council by-election.

    The Ethandune election takes place on 19 September and polls will be open from 7am - 10pm.

    The by-election is taking place due to the death of former cabinet member and Wiltshire Councillor Jerry Wickham who died in July.

  • Article: Sep 4, 2019

    A planning application has gone in for a new 'Community Policing Hub' on the site of the old training centre on The Avenue.

    The current copshop on Station Road, described as 'one of the oldest and most dilapidated buildings on the police estate', would be sold.

    The new facility would simply re-use the training centre building and car park, with a few changes to the structure plus the installation of a perimeter fence. The building would be in use 24 hours a day, with officers working in shifts.

  • Article: Sep 3, 2019

    This is no longer the South West Wiltshire constituency website - for that you have to go to . It will though continue to bring you news of the goings-on at Wiltshire Council. This will include reports of meetings and events, and WC news releases though with a more questioning and dubious approach to those than we get from the unquestioning conventional media.

  • Article: Aug 29, 2019

    A couple of years ago Wiltshire Council decided to register land in Wootton Bassett as a Town or Village Green (TVG). The owners of the land, Cooper Estates, claimed the council was wrong to do that because the site was within the town development limits, and the law says you can't register a TVG if the land is allocated for development.

  • Article: Aug 26, 2019

    The good news here is the possibility of improving the town for pedestrians and cyclists - Trowbridge is a lousy place for cycling at the moment with only a few derisory and inconvenient tracks. It's unlikely there'll be much improvement as WC doesn't recognise the problem, but there is at least some hope.