Showing posts from May, 2020

Pictures: Bedford Road's New Roundabout - A Work in Progress

Pictures taken this weekend show the progress being made to construct a new roundabout on the B5120, Bedford Road, Houghton Regis, at the junction with Thorn Road. Thorn Road was closed officially from 27th August 2018. The road is not due to reopen until 31 July 2020. The work is required infrastructure to help manage anticipated traffic flows for an additional 1,850 homes being constructed as 'HRN2' at Bidwell and Thorn in Houghton Regis, Central Bedfordshire. A range of other Highway works are also to be done to help Bedford Road through this period and beyond specifically in connection with the HRN2 outline planning permission.  A number of other developments, separate to HRN2, have, and will be making further improvements to ensure there is continued safety along Bedford Road. In this report we're focusing specifically at the works that 'HRN2' will bring to Bedford Road. All images can be enlarged. Photos  credit M Murphy & Richard Norris

Houghton Youth in Local Crime Gang Sentenced For Burglary

Burglary gang sentenced Gang targeted vehicles during burglaries. Committed 19 offences across three counties. Investigation led by Hertfordshire's Specialist Investigation Team. George Wadsworth from Houghton Regis is one of five men from a burglary gang that committed a series of burglary offences across Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire and Buckinghamshire. Hertfordshire Constabulary’s Specialist Investigation Team launched an investigation after a number of burglaries were committed between April and July 2019. In most cases the offenders forced entry into homes during the night to steal car keys and other small items. They would then steal the car. The approximate value of the property stolen was in the region of £125,000. Nineteen offences were committed in Hemel Hempstead , Harpenden , Caddington , Winslow , Leighton Buzzard and Chesham. And, the offenders would commit a number of offences in the same night. Hertfordshire Constabulary’s Specialist Investigation Team, took on

Is There A Cuckoo's Nest (Criminal Gang) Operating Near You?

Coronavirus has changed how we all operate. Unfortunately, as a result of lockdown and the restrictions on movement, the Covid-19 emergency has seen drug dealers and other organised crime gangs move off the streets and into vulnerable people’s homes. That is why the Safer Central Community Safety Partnership is raising awareness of the increasing criminal activity known as cuckooing. What is cuckooing? Named after the cuckoo that steals other birds’ nests, this is the practice of drugs gangs taking over the home of a vulnerable person in order to use it as a base for their criminal network. Last year, Bedfordshire Police identified more than 80 cuckooed locations in the county with theses addresses becoming a base for the production or dealing of drugs, as well as the exploitation of the person living there. Victims are befriended by the dealers as they may be vulnerable, isolated, and often drug users themselves. The victims can be robbed, threatened, bullied or even assaulted, so

Say Thank You To Volunteers - Send in A Video Or Picture

Community Action Bedfordshire are asking people to send in their photographs comments or video clips to help say a huge THANK YOU to a neighbour or someone in the community who has been a big help during the  Covid-19 pandemic. To make this part of  Volunteers’ Week you are asked to please send us in the photos by Monday 1st June. As Volunteers' Week 1-7 June this year will be slightly different a novel way of saying thanks has been created. It will still be an opportunity to say THANK YOU to everyone who has volunteered their time to help and support others in the community during this difficult time. If you would like to join in and say thank you, please send off a photo of you with a thank you sign, a thumbs up, a short clip of you saying thank you, or simply a thank you comment!  These will be combined into a Thank You video to go out during Volunteers' Week.  Please help to make this a video filled with thanks from across all the wonderful communities in Central Bedfordshi

Angry Resident Wants Peace Back as Chalk Pit Tourism Takes Off

By Alan Winter  updated 27 May An irate resident has contacted Houghton Regis News Desk to vent their frustrations about visitors to the Chalk Pit clogging up their unadopted roads. The resident, who did not want to be named, wrote, “As a resident on Fieldstone, we’re after some help. The quarry has been advertised on social media so it now has visitors from a wide area. They are blocking our residential roads, leaving rubbish and glass everywhere in the quarry. Having BBQs, drinking and meeting for social gatherings. They are drinking and dancing in the streets gone 11pm. There needs to be parking and the quarry managed before all the recent hard work is undone. We want peace back. “This parking and quarry issue has been going on for the last few weeks after advertising has appeared on social media. We heard someone say they had driven from Milton Keynes, and a neighbour has stated that 5 people he knows from Hemel Hempstead have attended. Just this morning, a friend from work s

CBC Children's Services Senior Managers Share their Thanks to Fantastic Foster Carers.

This video features Councillor Sue Clark, Central Bedfordshire Council's Director of Children’s Services, Sue Harrison and Assistant Director for Safeguarding and Early Help, Sacha Rymell and lots of the team behind the scenes, all thanking the wonderful foster carers in Central Bedfordshire. Foster Care Fortnight is an annual event to mark the amazing work that foster carers do all year round, but this year due to social distancing they could not than people individually.  Instead, they've made the video to thank them from afar, More than ever before the work foster carers are doing for some of our area's most vulnerable children, is making such a difference. Watch the video and if you’re interested in joining this wonderful group of foster carers, go to . If you’d like to speak to a member of the fostering team you can reach them on 0300 300 8181, they’d love to hear from you. “We've fostered one young man from Ira

Thousands of victims supported by Signpost Hub in last year

The Signpost Hub has supported almost 2,500 victims of crime in the last year, as it celebrates its two year anniversary. The Signpost Hub was launched in April 2018 to provide emotional and practical support and access to restorative justice for all victims of crime. From April 2019 to April 2020, the hub supported 2,452 victims who were referred into the hub by police officers, partner agencies, after being assessed as needing support, as well as a number of self-referrals. This is a rise of ten per cent more victims supported from the previous year and figures show 99 per cent of those say they’ve been satisfied or very satisfied with the service they have received from the hub in the last year. Trained Victim Care Co-ordinators (VCCs) support those affected by the crime including children, partners and parents. Signpost provides a one-stop shop offering access to available help, support, advice and guidance, with referrals to a wide range of specialist support organisations. A

Serious youth violence falls 9% in Bedfordshire as Government confirms fresh funding

There were 200 fewer victims of serious youth violence in Bedfordshire last year, with new strategies and Government funding helping cut the number of incidents by around 9 per cent. It comes as the Home Office confirmed that us and the county’s Violence and Exploitation Reduction Unit (VERU) have both received fresh funding to carry on this successful work over the next 12 months. Over the past year we have been able to draw on £1.38 million of ‘surge funding’ from the Government to run enforcement action targeting things like gangs and drug dealing. A separate £880,000 from ministers was used to establish the Police and Crime Commissioner’s VERU, which brings together partners such as the police, councils, health and community groups to tackle the root causes of violence and offer young people an alternative path. This has enabled Bedfordshire Police and the VERU to: Reduce serious youth violence by 9 per cent in the year to March 2020, equivalent to 200 fewer victims

Prime Recognition for Frontline Staff At Luton & Dunstable Hospital

The Amazon team at Dunstable have been keeping the team at Luton &  Dunstable Hospital stocked with food and toiletries throughout April and May.  Weekly donations of essential goods from the worth more than £4,000, included wish-list items of food, treats and hygiene products. They were delivered to the hospital by Amazon’s Dunstable Delivery Station team. The Amazon team also treated hospital staff on  International Nurses Day  12 May to an additional donation including chocolates, biscuits and sweets to acknowledge the hard work of NHS nurses during the COVID-19 crisis. The International Nurses Day delivery contained easily wiped drawstring bags for carrying uniforms home from the hospital. The Amazon team learned that nurses were finding cloth bags difficult to wash and maintain and added them to the donation. The products were donated to Luton and Dunstable Hospital Charity on a weekly basis as part of the “Amazon in the Community” programme, whereby the company supp

Death Crash Driver Jailed for 5½ Years

A Caddington man has been jailed for five-and-a-half-years after killing a young boy on his bike on a crossing. Michael Raffermati, 35, of Wren Close, Caddington pleaded guilty to one count of death by dangerous driving in October 2018. At around 2.20pm on 20 October, emergency services were called to reports of a collision. 6-year-old, Zi Singh, was crossing the road on his bike with his father at a crossing point on  White Horse Vale , when Raffermati hit him with his blue Vauxhall Astra. Singh was taken to hospital, where he died a short time later due to the injuries he sustained. Yesterday (Monday) at Luton Crown Court, Raffermati was sentenced to five-and-a-half-years for causing death by dangerous driving, five years disqualification extended by 33 months, and he will have to take an extended re-test. Sergeant James Thorne, from the Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire Roads Policing Unit, said: “I would like to commend Zi’s family for the manner in which t

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