DFLEKT Limited join Secured by Design with their innovative home keybox to tackle wireless key vehicle theft

DFLEKT Limited is one of the latest companies to join Secured by Design (SBD), the national police crime prevention initiative, with their DFLEKT home keybox having achieved Police Preferred Specification.

The DFLEKT company mission is to eliminate the Relay Hack, the method by which thieves boost wireless key signals and steal cars from drives without having to enter a house. This type of theft can often take as little as 20 seconds.

The DFLEKT home keybox is made with an aluminium enclosure which creates a very strong faraday cage around the box.  When the box is closed the faraday cage is created which blocks signals entering or leaving the box. It has been designed to sit harmoniously alongside household ornaments, can hold up to four sets of keys and their spares.

The DFLEKT home keybox has been designed so it can be operated with one hand, ensuring it can easily be operated, and is self-closing.  You can find out more about this SBD accredited product here:  
https://www.securedbydesign.com/member-companies/sbd-members?view=companydetail&sbdoldcompanyid=956 

SBD Development Officer Hazel Goss said: “It has been a pleasure to sign DFLEKT up as a new Secured by Design member. I love this product – not only does it stop keys being boosted due to the RFID elements, it also is unique in design and style.

“The DFLEKT RFID Decorative Wooden Key Box is an ideal product to store your keyless car keys and credit cards in due to its design and the space that it offers.  It comes in a lovely design with different finishes blending in with most household decor and is not out of place sitting on a sideboard or table. This is another exciting product that we have within the Secured by Design accredited product range and I am looking forward to working with the company for years to come”.

Bill Fraser, DFLEKT said: “The Relay Hack is a prevalent crime in the country at the moment and the ease of access to technology which can boost car key signals is contributing to the volume of cars stolen each year.

“Dflekt hopes to redress the balance in car thefts by ensuring your car key signal, and therefore your car, is protected. We are very excited to be working with Secured by Design and promoting their crime prevention initiatives”.

SBD is part of Police Crime Prevention Initiatives (PCPI), a police owned organisation that works on behalf of the Police Service to deliver a wide range of crime prevention and demand reduction initiatives across the UK. PCPI is a not-for-profit organisation and Board Members include senior police officers from each of the four Home Nations who control and direct the work PCPI carries out on behalf of the Police Service.

SBD plays a significant crime prevention role in the planning process to design out crime in a wide range of building sectors. It has achieved some significant success including one million homes built to SBD standards with reductions in crime of up to 87%. 

SBD have many partner organisations, ranging from the Home Office, Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government and the Police Service through to local authorities, housing associations, developers and manufacturers and work closely with standards and certification bodies to ensure that their publicly available standards actually meet the needs of the police and public alike. 

SBD is the only way for companies to obtain police accreditation for security-related products in the UK.

Met Commissioner advocates preventative side of policing at Secured by Design’s ATLAS 2019 National Training Event

The Metropolitan Police Commissioner, Cressida Dick, CBE, QPM spoke passionately about the police service’s commitment to crime prevention as she opened Secured by Design’s annual National Training Event at Gloucestershire’s Cotswold Water Park.

Addressing Designing Out Crime Officers from police forces across the UK, as well as officers from the Garda and the Channel Islands, the Commissioner reinforced the fundamental importance of crime prevention, saying how it had remained unchanged from the creation of the police service 190 years ago to date. 

Crime prevention

Speaking of Sir Robert Peel, founder of the Metropolitan Police, the Commissioner said: “He was very, very clear that crime prevention was our first duty as police people.

“When I look back to Commissioners before me, right back to when I joined in 1983, I think we would all say that policing is about preventing crime………We start with preventing crime, we all do that and that is our job.”

The Commissioner stated the importance of the police mobilising both the public and partners to assist in preventing crime, stressing the importance of the police’s partners in industry in this respect.

“Without them you guys would not be able to do your work” she said “And without them this conference just wouldn’t happen.”

Praise for Designing Out Crime Officers

The Commissioner paid tribute to the effect that the network of Secured by Design trained Designing Out Crime Officers – who are based in Police Forces and local authorities around the UK and who liaise with local authority planners, developers and architects to design out crime at the planning stage in a wide range of building sectors – are having on reducing the demand on their police colleagues.

“It is great for me to see the impact you are all having” she told the delegates, “There are tonnes and tonnes of examples of crime that has been designed out, the problems that have been solved, the demand that has been reduced on all of our policing colleagues, by your work.”

The Commissioner recognised the value of Designing Out Crime Officers by commenting that she had 35 such officers in her force and was hoping to have more.

PCPI / SBD

The Commissioner also praised the work of Police Crime Prevention Initiatives (PCPI) and its best known initiative Secured by Design (SBD), and the effect it has in developments which are built to SBD standards.

“It’s great to see PCPI really thriving and SBD thriving. They are going from strength to strength latterly, it’s great for me to see the impact that you are all having. 

“As I was preparing for this event, I looked at some of the research that is out there and was reminded again that in SBD certificated developments, academic research, totally independent, will show up to 70% less crime than similar developments that aren’t certificated.

“In the Met we are working at a number of levels with PCPI, the Home Office and with Government ; I want us to do more and more of this in every way, but not least in terms of crime prevention.”

Private security industry

Addressing the 50 exhibitors and SBD member companies, the Commissioner spoke about the role that the private security industry play in supporting the police with crime prevention, praising them for assisting the police with security-related products which deter and prevent crime.

Speaking about moped-enabled crime in London and the range of tactics that the Metropolitan Police had used to tackle it, the Commissioner said that whilst the enforcement tactics had gained the publicity a large amount of credit should go to the preventative work.“When I became Commissioner moped-enabled crime was raging away in London, theft of mopeds almost the same. With some of the enforcement tactics that we have used, better intelligence, better co-ordination, better investigation, and on occasion pursuing and even tactical contact, that’s what has gained the publicity – but actually a massive amount of the effort has been on prevention, and long term of course the answer must be designing out” she said.

Specifically referencing the companies who make ‘fabulous’ security related products helping to make mopeds harder to steel, the Commissioner continued “Prevention has been a massive part of the 50% reduction that we have achieved”.

The Commissioner concluded by alluding to the UK’s acknowledged crime prevention prowess, adding “Crime prevention is absolutely fundamental ………it is something we can be proud of in this country, in our level of expertise and the work we do in terms of crime prevention.  We export it around the world, our protective security industry is world famous.”

The ATLAS 2019 National Training Event celebrated 30 years of SBD. As the national crime prevention scheme, SBD has achieved significant successes, influencing national planning policy to embed crime prevention in the planning process and establishing police security standards in the building and construction industry. This has led to more than one million homes built to SBD crime prevention standards across the UK – that’s 30% of all new homes built – with reductions in crime of up to 87% year-on-year as reported by Police Scotland in 2017.

NORTHERN AMBULANCE ALLIANCE SAVES £1 MILLION THROUGH JOINT PROCUREMENT OF FLEET MANAGEMENT SYSTEM

The Northern Ambulance Alliance (NAA) is improving the way it manages fleet information whilst simultaneously reducing costs and creating the ability to benchmark data across three ambulance trusts through a shared five year contract with Civica Tranman.

The NAA has undertaken a joint procurement to replace existing fleet management systems with an innovative, fit for purpose system which will support fleet managers to reduce vehicle costs through more efficient data capture and analysis.

This is the very first time a collaborative procurement has been undertaken by the NAA which is an alliance between North West Ambulance Service (NWAS), Yorkshire Ambulance Service (YAS) and North East Ambulance Service (NEAS). The trusts have joined forces with the objective of identifying and developing opportunities for joint efficiencies and innovation. East Midlands Ambulance Service (EMAS) is also an associate member of the NAA.

This project has been led by NWAS Assistant Director of Estates and Fleet Neil Maher with the support of colleagues at NEAS and YAS, as well as the NWAS programme management office. Further support has been provided by a project team including key representatives from fleet, finance, procurement and information management and technology teams at NWAS, YAS and NEAS.

The project went live in early March following workshops with Civica to ensure the new system meets the specification and needs of each of the trusts involved.

The key benefits of the new Tranman fleet management system are as follows:

  • Only one tendering process was carried out instead of three individual tenders, reducing duplication.
  • Only one lot of set up costs were required across the three trusts.
  • One common system will help to drive efficiencies within the ambulance fleet as a whole.
  • There is an overarching reporting and management suite across the member trusts.

Neil Maher, Assistant Director of Estates and Fleet at NWAS said: “There have been significant savings achieved in the procurement of this system, however we see the real value of it as a long term investment for the three trusts in terms of future operating costs, process redesign, organisational learning, fleet quality, and the ability to make better informed decisions for future fleet procurements.

“It certainly falls within the ethos of Lord Carter’s report on operational productivity and performance in English NHS Ambulance trusts, and goes a long way to laying the foundations for achieving the aims of the report in terms of operational fleets in the North West, North East and Yorkshire.”

Rod Barnes, Chief Executive at YAS commented: “Our fleet is so critical to patient care that we welcome having improved visibility from the new system. This will allow all three trusts to improve the quality and efficiency of their operations which is an important step in supporting Lord Carter’s recommendations to increase productivity and create greater efficiencies together.”

Lynne Hodgson, Director of Finance at NEAS added: “There are a number of projects being pursued by the estates, fleet and procurement workstream of the overall NAA programme, all aiming to achieve standardisation and value for money. The teams are committed to working together to deliver efficiencies and drive forward best practice. The joint procurement of the new fleet management system is a significant milestone in this programme of work.’

Busiest month on record for London Ambulance Service

Latest figures reveal that December 2018 was London Ambulance Service’s busiest month on record

Frontline ambulance crews in the capital treated almost 101,000 patients  – around 7,000 more than the monthly average for last year.

Director of Operations Paul Woodrow said: “Demand on our services continues to rise year on year. December is a particularly busy month for us due to Christmas festivities and winter illnesses and injuries.

“We plan carefully for periods of increased activity and put more staff on the road and in our control rooms to meet the increased demand. As a result, every day in December 2018 we reached our most seriously ill and injured patients (category 1 calls) in less than seven minutes.

“This is a real credit to the hard work of all of our staff – including those on the frontline treating patients, those in our control rooms taking calls and sending ambulances and also those working behind the scenes.”

The second busiest month on record was December 2016, when ambulance crews saw 99,632 patients face to face, followed by December 2017, which saw 97,933 patients assessed and treated.

As part of its five-year strategy, the Service is looking at a variety of innovative ways to meet the challenge of rising demand across London.

A key aim of the strategy is to reduce the proportion of patients that ambulance crews take to emergency departments when their individual needs can be met just as, or more, effectively in their own homes or a referral to an alternative service.

The Service is also aiming to offer a wider range of specialist staff, including midwives and mental health nurses, and provide more care for patients on the telephone and at the scene where a hospital admission is not required.

The Service’s strategy also involves taking full advantage of new digital technology to make our services more accessible and improve the overall experience for our patients.

Paul added: “With the increased demand and recent cold snap, I’d like to remind Londoners to only call for an ambulance in an emergency and use 111 for urgent healthcare advice, or visit your GP or pharmacist.”

SWASFT paramedics work with Bournemouth University on resilience training

Paramedics at South Western Ambulance Service (SWASFT) will be working together with Bournemouth University on a new training programme that will help Commanders across the South West if they ever have to face a major emergency involving a large number of casualties.  This will ultimately help save lives if the worst was ever to happen, together with other emergency services.  

Bournemouth University Disaster Management Centre (BUDMC) will be working with SWASFT to provide pre-course and post-course enrichment materials via their Online Learning portal so the training can be completed by paramedics currently working on the frontline.  

The course is going to enhance the disaster management skills of paramedics with specialist software to help simulate major disasters like a hazardous chemical incident, a terrorist bomb or a firearms attack.  It will help commanders to organise ambulance crews and NHS assets to the scene to quickly help triage and treat patients affected and the public at large.    

Robert Flute, Emergency Preparedness Resilience and Response (EPRR) Command Training Advisor, said: “The new online aspect of our command courses will greatly benefit SWASFT’s wider vision for the ambulance service as a regional centre of best practice in incident command training.

“Working with Bournemouth University Disaster Management Centre can only enhance the standing of our courses which are seen as best practice. SWASFT is the first ambulance trust to offer this unique partnership.”

SWASFT already have a robust Incident Response Plan in place to deal with major incidents of this kind but this online training will help paramedics in command practice their resilience skills in advance so they are ready to deal with a large amount of casualties well in advance, and response appropriately.  

They will learn how to manage interagency meetings, support medical and other responders who may assist SWASFT at a major incident. This eLearning will aid retention and enhance knowledge in between physical attendance at a command course. 

BUDMC’s bespoke e-learning platform will support all of our command courses for operational on scene commanders, and for those manging the wider tactical Trust response as well as the senior managers overseeing the strategic response and recovery from any disruptive challenge.

This online platform will allow our commanders to have access to a wide range of online training materials including simulated command groups, health advice and questions in such a way as is easily accessible from any device. 

SWASFT will be able to set assessment exercises and the software can issue certificates to students who successfully complete a given module of the online training. 

The platform has excellent reporting functions so training staff can monitor the progress of each individual through the course content. 

In addition, our suite of command courses are currently undergoing assessment by the CPD Standards Office. 

The CPD Standards Office is part of the Professional Development Consortium, which is also home to the CPD research project. The organisation and the logo are recognised internationally and by all 1,600 regulators, professional bodies and institutions in the UK.

This process will take 6 weeks. The assessment team will be looking at:

• The learning methodology of the training engagement of the participants

• The process will also look to see how command skills are retainable and transferable. 

• The process will look at the educational authority of the training; where the content was sourced from and how it was put together.

To register a defibrillator with SWASFT, please visit: https://www.swast.nhs.uk/welcome/defibrillator-scheme/defibrillators

“Many other police officers and staff will follow in her footsteps” – West Midlands Police staff member one of first in country to achieve crime prevention qualification success

West Midlands Police staff member Susan Joyce has become one of the first people to successfully complete a Level 4 Certificate in Crime Prevention, an accredited qualification delivered by Police Crime Prevention Initiatives (PCPI) Crime Prevention Academy.

Susan, who joined West Midlands Police in 1995, was a supervisor within West Midlands Police’s Birmingham Partnerships before joining the Force’s Design Out Crime Team in early 2018.

Guy Collyer, Head of Learning and Development, Police Crime Prevention Initiatives, said: “Susan should be congratulated for being one of the first candidates to achieve an accredited qualification in Crime Prevention with us. 

“Many other police officers and staff will follow in her footsteps, and we encourage all other agencies who have staff working in this area of the criminal justice arena, to speak to us about the qualifications we now deliver for them as well.”

West Midlands Police’s Designing Out Crime manager, Mark Silvester, said: “I am really pleased to have Susan as part of my team of Designing Out Crime Officers, she has settled in to the role very well. I am immensely proud of the fact Susan is the first person to have passed the new Level 4 course. 

“Susan joins the forces team of nine DOCO’s in West Midlands Police, and working alongside the four colleagues for the areas covered under the Birmingham Neighbourhood Police Unit.”

The Level 4 Certificate in Crime Prevention is part of the new generation of accredited, regulated and portable qualifications in crime prevention and designing out crime which become available from September 2018.  The qualifications provide learning and CPD opportunities for those within the Police Service and other public organisations that have a statutory duty around delivering safer communities.  This includes Local Authority departments, Community Safety Partnerships, Fire and Rescue, Health and Probation services.  The qualifications are also available and relevant to private sector businesses such as security staff and managers, architects and planners.  

As well as scheduled national delivery, the qualifications can be delivered locally dependent on delegate numbers and available budget of an organisation.  To find out more about the qualifications delivered by the Academy and scheduled dates for delivery in 2019/2020, please contact:training@police-cpi.co.uk

Police Crime Prevention Initiatives (PCPI) is a police owned organisation that works on behalf of Police & Crime Commissioners and Chief Constables to deliver a wide range of crime prevention and demand reduction initiatives across the UK. It is a not-for-profit organisation and Board Members include senior police officers from each of the four Home Nations who control and direct the work PCPI carries out on behalf of the Police Service.  

The PCPI Crime Prevention Academy is an Approved Centre for the awarding body, ProQual, and the accredited qualifications which it delivers are regulated by Ofqual.

Thames Valley emergency services celebrate far-ranging Collaboration Programme

  • Thames Valley Collaboration Programme highlights region’s emergency services
  • Royal Berkshire Fire & Rescue Service (RBFRS), Oxfordshire County Council Fire & Rescue Service (OFRS), and Buckinghamshire Fire & Rescue Service (BFRS) plus police and ambulance services
  • Collaboration projects underway across three counties with more to follow  

Emergency services across Thames Valley are working in close collaboration to bring innovation, efficiency, and better value for money for the people of Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, and Oxfordshire.

Emergency Services Collaboration in the Thames Valley sets out the ambitious strategy behind the collaboration and explains in detail the type of cross-county work that is already underway or planned for the near future.

This ongoing programme of collaborative activity also involves Thames Valley Police (TVP), and South Central Ambulance Service (SCAS), as well as the region’s three fire and rescue services.

What does Collaboration look like?

Collaboration takes many forms, including –

  • Joint control rooms
  • Shared estates and assets
  • First response and co-responding
  • Information sharing
  • Recruitment
  • Shared specialist capabilities

Many of these elements are already underway across the emergency services within Thames Valley, with several other innovative projects planned for the coming months. 

Case Study: Thames Valley Fire Control Service

Thames Valley Fire Control Service, based in Calcot, Reading, is a joint fire service control room serving the people of Buckinghamshire, Milton Keynes, Oxfordshire and Berkshire, helping a combined population of two million people with the help of the most up-to-date technology.

Since opening in April 2015, the service has delivered significant savings to all three services. By the end of 2024-25, total savings of nearly £16 million are expected thanks to the increased efficiency and improved performance the shared control room allows.

Case Study: Jointly purchased fire engines

The next generation of fire engines is now serving in the Thames Valley following a successful collaborative project run in a partnership between Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire and Berkshire fire and rescue services.

A total of 37 new fire engines will be delivered by 2021, with 15 delivered in 2017, eight for Buckinghamshire, three for Oxfordshire and four for Berkshire. This project will lead to estimated savings of more than £700,000. The vehicles are based at stations close to the three services’ shared borders and replace existing vehicles.

Case Study: Shared premises

Hungerford Community Fire Station officially opened following a major refurbishment which began in November 2016. The refurbishment not only delivered a modern, fit-for-purpose fire station, but also Berkshire’s first community tri-service station, providing shared facilities for RBFRS, TVP and SCAS.

More recently, the Witness Care Unit from TVP and Victims First, part of the Office of Police and Crime Commissioner (OPCC), began sharing office space within the Reading headquarters of RBFRS.

In Oxfordshire, work will start in March 2019 on refurbishments to Chipping Norton and Woodstock Fire Stations, which will become joint Fire and Police stations serving their communities.

What happens next?

Case study: Milton Keynes Emergency Services Hub

Buckinghamshire and Milton Keynes Fire Authority is working with SCAS and TVP to move into a new purpose-built ‘hub’ that will see all three services operate from one site, based at West Ashland in Milton Keynes.

The building will allow the three services to leave five existing sites in the Milton Keynes area, which will free-up those sites for alternative use and provide substantial savings to taxpayers from reduced running costs. The new site should be ready for occupation by around October 2019.

In Berkshire, there are plans for Theale to host a new fire station, with facilities provided for both SCAS and TVP on the premises. Crowthorne will also be rebuilt to house a similar new building, with work due to commence in 2019.

In Oxfordshire, plans are being finalised to build the Carterton Community Hub. The temporary Carterton Fire Station was opened in December 2018, which will move into the Community Hub when it has been built. The Hub will provide a base for emergency and communities services in the area and be a resource for the local community.

Future opportunities

Assistant Chief Fire Officer Simon Jefferies, collaboration lead for RBFRS, said: “The blue light services of the Thames Valley have a proud tradition of collaboration and by working together with our emergency services partners we can ensure that we provide the best value for money for the people we serve.

“This important document outlines the collaboration that has been going on for a number of years between the three fire and rescue services and our partners, including the move to a shared Thames Valley Fire Control Service in 2015.

“The existing willingness to work together, combined with a new legislative approach will provide structure and a renewed emphasis for emergency service partners to develop, improve and maintain their collaborative working arrangements with new and existing partners.”

Lynne Swift, BFRS Director of People and Organisational Development, is the collaboration lead for BFRS. She said: “Working together and sharing accommodation with other emergency services both increases opportunities for more partnership work and provides savings for the public.

“We will continue to explore opportunities to collaborate and where possible share accommodation with other emergency services to ensure that we provide the best possible service and value for money to the communities of Thames Valley.”

Assistant Chief Fire Officer Rob McDougall, collaboration lead for OFRS, explained: “The Thames Valley region is a leading example of public sector collaboration which is not only an effective and efficient way of working, but a moral duty to help protect the communities we serve. It further embeds shared working practices and allows us to better align our response to ensure our communities receive an effective response no matter which side of the county border they live in.”

Jodie, 32, thanks Ambulance Crew After Cardiac Arrest

A 32-year-old woman has been reunited with the South Western Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust (SWASFT) crew who saved her life when her heart stopped beating.

Jodie Prudames, 32, had rapid chest pains and began to sweat profusely at her home in Midsomer Norton, North East Somerset in October.

Then she went into cardiac arrest, lost consciousness and stopped breathing.

SWASFT Paramedic Ed Bowyer resuscitated Jodie, with the help of her partner Janson. She survived and has gone on to make a fantastic recovery.

Jodie went to Shepton Mallet ambulance station on Thursday 7 March to thank Ed and other SWASFT staff for saving her.

Jodie said: “I thought I was going to die. I had an awful feeling in my chest like a burning heat. I’ve never felt anything like it before. But Ed arrived really quickly, and thanks to him and the other crew I made it through.”

Now Jodie is encouraging other people to step in and take action if they think somebody may be having a cardiac arrest or heart attack.

She has welcomed government plans to teach CPR and First Aid to schoolchildren from next year. It is hoped the long-awaited move will boost survival rates from out-of-hospital cardiac arrests, potentially saving thousands of lives.

Jodie said: “At first I struggled with what had happened to me, because there was no logical explanation. But since then I’ve realised how fortunate I was to survive.

“It’s changed my outlook on life. I had a lot of mental health problems beforehand, but afterwards it felt like a weight had been lifted off my shoulders.

“It’s brilliant that CPR will be taught in schools, and it has 100% of my support. I’m making sure my young daughter is medically aware, and I’d really recommend anyone to learn what to do in an emergency so they can help people.” 

In the months before her emergency, Jodie said she had infrequent chest pains, but never thought she had a heart problem. 

On the day of the incident Jodie’s mum Andria called 999 after her daughter had been in pain for around 30 minutes.

Staff in the SWASFT Control Hub assessed Jodie’s condition over the phone, and organised for crews to respond.

Paramedic Ed Bowyer arrived within five minutes to give her routine treatment. But then Jodie’s heart stopped beating, and she needed urgent help to stay alive.

Ed led the effort to resuscitate Jodie with the help of Janson. They pulled her onto floor, and laid her flat on her back. By doing CPR and shocking her with a defibrillator, they managed to get her heart beating again.

SWASFT Student Paramedic Nick Tolson and other SWASFT staff helped to provide post-resuscitation care for Jodie.

Jodie was driven in an ambulance to hospital where she was given heart surgery.

It was later confirmed that Jodie’s cardiac arrest was caused by a heart attack.

Paramedic Ed Bowyer said: “This incident highlights that a cardiac arrest can happen to anyone, of any age, and at any time.

“Jodie is not the stereotypical person to suffer a heart attack. Many are elderly or suffer with known heart problems, whereas Jodie is young and normally well.

“Many factors contributed to the fantastic recovery of Jodie. Because she had a cardiac arrest in front of me meant she was given the best possible chance of survival from the very start, including early defibrillation and CPR.

“Jodie is living proof that people can and do survive.”

Secured by Design helps to make Alder Hey Children’s Hospital a safe place with ‘amazingly low’ levels of crime

Sometimes crime prevention is at its best when it’s least noticeable to members of the public – that’s certainly the case with Alder Hey Children’s Hospital in Liverpool, which opened its doors for the first time in 2015.

The hospital authorities were focused on providing a building that was relaxed, friendly, open and welcoming. This approach, which is entirely appropriate and befits a children’s hospital, could be considered contrary to what is traditionally thought of from a policing perspective as the makings of a secure building.

Therefore it presented huge challenges for the specialist Designing Out Crime Officers from Merseyside Police who were keen to work with the hospital, and its architects and developers, to make the building safe and secure.

One of the biggest examples of how these two very different requirements came together successfully was in the meandering approach to the hospital’s front entrance.

It was agreed that strategically placed featured art, planters and trees would help to create a pleasant environment for patients, parents, visitors and staff. But these were also measures that would help prevent the hospital from becoming a ‘soft target’ from what police call hostile vehicle mitigation – vehicles deliberately being driven off-road at buildings or pedestrians for criminal or terrorist purposes.

As well as building in security to the layout and landscaping, Merseyside Police also worked to ensure the physical security of the hospital’s buildings with the use of CCTV, lighting to increase visibility, access control systems, and robust doors, windows and locks that would be difficult for casual or opportunistic criminals to gain easy access.

In the three years since the £237m hospital, officially called Alder Hey in the Park, opened, there have been a total of 187 recorded offences – that’s just over one a week on average, according to figures released by Merseyside Police.

The majority of these offences are sneak thefts at the retail outlets inside the hospital and other thefts, such as mobile phones being taken from handbags. Other offences include assaults on staff and pedal cycle thefts.

Sgt Frank Stott, of Merseyside Police, said that whilst the main focus of the build team was to provide the best possible patient care and for people visiting and working in the hospital, this presented unique challenges for the police.

“This was a brand new building so could effectively be designed from the outset. We were able to identify and introduce measures and techniques to provide a safe and low crime environment.

“We were really pleased that there was a willingness to engage with us about crime prevention and listen to our advice to help make their building safer. The crime figures are amazingly low in comparison to similar buildings. It shows what can be achieved when organisations are prepared to come together at the right time to work for the common good.”

Secured by Design, the national police crime prevention initiative, has a network of SBD trained police officers and staff attached to police forces and local authorities around the UK. Known as Designing Out Crime Officers, they work with architects, developers and local authority planners and the pre-planning and planning stages through to construction to design out crime.

Alder Hey opened with 270 beds, including 48 critical care beds for patients in intensive care, high dependency and burns units. There are 16 operating theatres, four for day-case surgery and 12 inpatient theatres.

It cares for more than 275,000 children, young people and their families every year providing a range of treatments from common illnesses to highly complex and specialist conditions.

The hospital is part of a complex that includes a brand new research, innovation and education centre.

Alder Hey is one of only four stand-alone paediatric trusts in the country, is one of Europe’s biggest and busiest children’s hospitals, and is becoming recognised as one of the world’s leaders in children’s healthcare and research into children’s medicines, infection, inflammation and oncology.