Alleygating refers to the gating of alleyways and lanes in order to reduce the likelihood of crimes such as rear-access burglary, anti-social behaviour, fly-tipping, vehicle crime and graffiti. By target-hardening these problem alleyways there is a significant reduction in the residents’ fear of crime and an increase in the perception of safety and satisfaction in their neighbourhood.
Over 70% of burglaries occur via criminals getting into a house through a rear window or door, therefore, alleygating offers residents an opportunity to reduce the threat of crime by securing the rear access of their property.
Alley gating has been used very successfully all over Bristol and is an excellent example of partnership work between the community, Police, Bristol City Council and the Safer Bristol partnership to tackle crime and anti-social behaviour.
More and more local residents are forming groups to gate off their problem lanes. The Police are currently involved in 80 to 100 alleygating schemes each at various different stages of progression. In 2009 the Avon and Somerset Police Community Trust have match-funded 14 alleygating schemes, and since the match-funding was taken over by the Safer Bristol Partnership in November 2009, Safer Bristol have match-funded 8 alleygating schemes in their first month of involvement alone.
In the summer of 2009, a group of residents from Bishopsworth got together and formed a group called the ‘Headley Park Gating Scheme’ to tackle the crime that was occurring in their lanes. The residents worked closely with the Police and applied for match-funding from the ‘Police Community Trust’ which is a registered charity. They were granted funding and following this installed two alley gates to secure the rear of their properties. Only residents directly affected by the scheme had keys to the gates, and since the gates were erected crime statistics show that there has been a 92% reduction in crime in the surrounding properties and the lane itself.
Bristol City Council provide outright funding for schemes in areas of Bristol which are statistically proven to suffer a higher burglary rate than other areas of the city. In 2009, Avon and Somerset Constabulary installed 12 gates within the burglary hot-spot areas of Redland and Windmill Hill, on behalf of Bristol City Council. Another 10 schemes are also due to be implemented in these areas using Bristol City Council funding in January / February 2010.
The advice in the attached pack attempts to answer questions and provide solutions to the problems that many gating schemes have experienced in the past. The pack aims to clarify the process you need to go through to gate off your lane, so that your gates are installed legally, and are as problem free and are as effective as possible.
For more information on burglary and security please see our Crime Reduction pages.