Criminal cash pays for new safety measures at Stoke-on-Trent park
CRIME-CUTTING measures are to be installed at one of Stoke-on-Trent's biggest parks – using cash recovered from criminals.
The Friends of Central Forest Park is to install three shelters and locker facilities at the skating area.
The group will also put in a new pushchair stall at the children's play area and bicycle and scooter racks at the visitor centre.
Members hope the new scheme will deter thieves at the park following a 'high number' of mobile phone and bag thefts.
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They were awarded £14,000 for the project after bidding for cash from Staffordshire Police under the Proceeds of Crime Act (POCA).
Stoke-on-Trent City Council has now granted permission to install the facilities,
Planning officer Phil Murphy said in his report: "The changes proposed would result in improved facilities for all users of the application site."
Friends group chairman Paul Breeze, from Hanley, who also represents Birches Head and Central Forest Park on the city council, said: "The whole thing is about trying to reduce the level of theft and crime at the park."