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Police News - Beat SM46 Meadows & Morningside / Southside & Newington

A Division News May 2011

'with you for you'

  Divisional Commanders Message

The recent run of good weather has been a welcome introduction to the summer months, with more people out enjoying the sunshine and mild temperatures.

In policing terms, this change in season can often spell a shift in the types of crime that are committed. In particular, we can often see a rise in crimes such as thefts to garden sheds and garages, as well as a rise in the number of ‘bogus callers’. I would always encourage you to be aware of people trying to gain access to your home, or those selling services door-to-door.

The summer months can often also signal a rise in street drinking, and we continually work with our partners in the City of Edinburgh Council to ensure this does not bring a rise in anti social behaviour or associated crime. Drinking in public spaces is not an offence in Edinburgh, however we will ensure it does not affect the enjoyment of others living or visiting the area, including enforcing byelaws that are in place in areas of the city.

Finally, I’m sure many of you will have seen coverage of the Royal wedding of Prince William and Catherine Middleton. While we do not expect the same crowds to descend on Edinburgh for the wedding of Zara Phillips and Mike Tyndall in July, our events planning sections are still making plans for this event to ensure it passes without incident and is a success. This, combined with the upcoming Armed Forces Day, means we are guaranteed a busy and exciting summer of policing ahead.

Chief Superintendent Gill Imery, 'A' Divisional Commander.

Crime Prevention

As mentioned, visits from Bogus Workers tend to increase in the summer months, below is some advice on how to help ensure you don’t fall victim:

  • Cold Callers/Bogus Workmen turn up on the doorstep unannounced with good excuses such as ‘just happen to be working in the area’ ‘you have some loose slates.’ Never let a casual caller do any work on your property; be that gardening; roofing or laying/repairing your drive. Thank them and inform them that your tradesman will look at it. Most reputable companies do not operate in this manner.
  • What do Bogus Workmen look like? They are usually very plausible people dressed for the part.
  • Who is at risk from them and when? We all are but they tend to prey on the more vulnerable and will usually call through the day.
  • What can you do? Be prepared. Are you expecting someone to call? Check the person on the doorstep is genuine; most service providers carry identification, use the phone book to get the telephone number to contact the company to confirm. Best of all only deal with callers by appointment.
  • Don’t keep large sums of money in your home.
  • Keep front and back doors locked even if you are just in the garden.

If suspicious persons are in the area - phone the police - give a good description of them and most importantly give the registration number, make/model, and colour of any vehicle involved.

  Local Operation and initiatives


Between 18th - 21st April 2011, St.Leonards SNT Officers carried out an initiative aimed at tackling the issue of careless and inconsiderate cycling in response to concerns raised by the community.

During this period four officers per shift carried out dedicated pedal cycle patrols throughout the area focussing on cyclists ignoring red taffic signals and cycling on pavements. A robust stance was taken with ten cyclists receiving fixed penalty tickets for failing to obey red lights and ignoring no entry signs. A further 18 cyclists were given warnings in relation to their manner of cycling.

To increase our ability to tackle this issue an additional four officers from the Safer Neighbourhood Team are being issued with pedal cycles, taking our compliment of trained officers up to 11. This enables us to increase our efforts to focus on the problems caused by cyclists in the area.

This demonstrates our commitment to tackle the local issues raised by you and is further evidence of our commitment to our communities.

As part of an ongoing local initiative targeting criminality in the area St.Leonards Safer Neighbourhood Team Officers traced a male who was regularly driving whilst disqualified. The male was cautioned and charged and had his vehicle seized. This male has come to Police attention on numerous occasions in the past and seizing his vehicle will undoubtedly impact on his criminal lifestyle.

Community Safety

In response to concerns raised by members of the public, two separate days of action were conducted by your SNT officers. On 13th April joint patrols were carried out by Police and Community Safety Officers in the Grange, following the recent spate of robberies in the area. On 20th April a similar initative was conducted in and around Buccleuch Street after a series of fires. Both initiatives were well received by the community with positive feedback being received on each occasion. The Union Bar project continues to attract young people from across the City. The project is now in it’s tenth week and is aimed at reducing youth related anti-social behaviour on Bruntsfield Links. Due to the positive engagement between Police and young people information was received in relation to drug dealing, a female in possession of a knife near to a school was also arrested after young people who attend the bar provided information to Police.

Notable arrests:

On 6th April two males were arrested and charged with eleven offences ranging from theft by housebreaking to attempted housebreaking, all of which occurred at domestic dwellings in the St.Leonards area. On 14th April a male was arrested in relation to a housebreaking in the Bruntsfield area.

The male subsequently provided information in relation to a number of housebreakings in the area and was eventually charged with six counts of theft by housebreaking. All involved were remanded in custody.

  Appeal for information

Last months newsletter contained an article reminding the community about the problems encountered with underage drinking.

Unfortunately during the month of April a young person from the St.Leonards area became gravely ill and was taken to Edinburgh Royal Infirmary, after consuming a large quantity of alcohol in a public place. Thankfully the person concerned made a full recovery after receiving medical attention. On this occasion the alcohol involved was not purchased by an adult, but by a friend of the young person, who although underage themselves, managed to purchase the alcohol using a false identification card, which itself is an offence. Sadly this once again highlights the serious consequences of underage drinking. We are appealing to young people, parents and shopkeepers to be vigilant and if they suspect a person is in possession of a false ID card to confiscate it and hand it into St.Leonards Police station.

Local Priorities

At the Priority Setting Group Meetings in April the following priorities were agreed;

Southside & Newington

  • Drug/alcohol fuelled anti social behaviour in Nicolson and Bristo Square.
  • Inconsiderate cycling
  • Dog fouling

Meadows & Morningside

  • Dog fouling in East Castle Road, Edinburgh.
  • Youths disorder in Braidburn Valley Park.
  • Careless and inconsiderate cycling throughout the area.

In particular the pathway between Leven Terrace and Melville Drive. Over the coming months Officers from St.Leonards Safer Neighbourhood Team and the various partner agencies will be addressing these priorities, carrying out focussed high visibility foot and pedal cycle patrols throughout the area.

Community Police

On the 1st May 2011, every Community Policing poster on Lothian and Borders Police website was refreshed. New posters will soon be put up in every council ward area in the Force.

Our Community Commitment promises:

  • to make sure your local officers are accessible and visible in your area
  • to make sure you know who the police officers serving your area are, and how to contact them

The Community Policing posters are designed to help you get to know the community officers in your area, and give their phone numbers and email contact details. They also give the postal address for the police station serving your area.

The posters will be refreshed again in six month’s time.

To find out more, see ‘Contact your local officer'.

  A Division

City of Edinburgh help and advice National freephone helplines

Lothian and Borders Police
Non emergency
0131 311 3131

Lothian & Borders Fire & Rescue Service
Fire safety advice:
(freephone) 0800 169 0320

Lothian Gay and Lesbian Switchboard
0131 556 4049
0131 557 0751 (lesbian)

For emotional advice if you are feeling depressed or suicidal:
0131 221 9999 (Edinburgh)
08457 90 90 90 (National)

Shakti Women’s Aid
Support and information for black minority ethnic women experiencing domestic abuse:
0131 475 2399

Signposts people with disability to a wide range of services:
0131 669 1600

Victim Support
01896 751 212

Women’s Aid
0131 3158 110

(calls may not be free from mobile phones)

Breathing Space
For emotional advice if you are feeling depressed:
0800 838 587

Help for people aged 18 or under:
0800 11 11

Know the Score
Free confidential drugs information and advice:
0800 587 587 9

Message Home
Get a message home for free if you have run away:
0800 700 740

National Debtline
0808 808 4000

National Domestic Violence Helpline
0808 2000 247

National Missing Persons Helpline
0500 700 700

Runaway Helpline
0808 800 7070

Scottish Domestic Abuse Line
0800 027 1234

Shelter’s Free Housing Advice Helpline
0808 800 4444

Lesbian, gay and bisexual charity:
08000 50 20 20

Womens Aid
0808 2000 247

Call 0800 555 111 (24 hours)
Meadows/Morningside Safer Neighbourhood Team
Southside/Newington Safer Neighbourhood Team
Call 0131 662 5016/5017
City of Edinburgh Council
Environmental Wardens - Call 0131 529 7440
Antisocial Behaviour Helpline - Call 0131 529 7050 (24 hours)