Hackney residents blow the whistle on crime
- Credit: Archant
Hackney’s houseboat owners are blowing the whistle on canal crime with a community-led scheme to bring down burglaries on the waterway.
Boaters on Regent’s Canal are handing out whistles in an attempt to improve safety along their stretch of the towpath.
Barge owners are being urged to keep a whistle on their keys or around their neck and blow it if they see someone acting suspiciously, looking through windows or committing a crime.
Naseem Regragui, who is spearheading the initiative, said those he had spoken to on the towpath had been “overwhelmingly positive”.
You may also want to watch:
He said: “Both the Canal and River Trust and the Metropolitan Police are on board and are ordering whistles. Some burglars have been caught recently.”
It is hoped Operation Whistleblower will reduce an increased number of thefts and vandalism of moored boats in recent months.
- 1 Aldi Local to open in Dalston next month
- 2 No shortage of energy for runners in the Hackney Half and 5K
- 3 Hackney Downs anti-vax camp cost £50,000 to remove
- 4 Hackney Wick floating restaurant wins Catey award
- 5 'It could be a grim Christmas': Brexit blamed for Hackney fuel shortages
- 6 Mosaic unveiled near Finsbury Park station entrance at City North
- 7 Meet the Insta-famous Hackney café taking over your feed
- 8 Petrol station forecourts closed and long queues in north London
- 9 Hundreds of activists descend on north London incinerator demanding end to rebuild
- 10 TV drama of fascism and resistance in Jewish East London
“A donation of 50p or £1 means that we can keep distributing whistles as boats arrive and leave so that there are always whistleblowers near,” he said.
Keith Brown, community organiser for the Regent’s Canal and River Lea, said together with residents he was trying to create a “standardised plan of action for whistling and responding”.
The scheme appears to be gaining momentum with houseboat owners from as far as Tottenham and Kensal Rise voicing their support for the campaign.
It has also inspired Hackney Wick residents, who have been recently affected by a spate of muggings along the River Lee.
Founder of community group Urban Village Network, Vilmar Pellisson, 39, of Roach Road, Hackney Wick, said: “I have sent out leaflets so people are aware they should take some precautions.
“Canal-facing residents have a whistle. We raise an alarm by blowing the whistles. It creates a more secure neighbourhood.
“People carry a torch at night while walking along White Post Lane and the footpath which leads to Roach Road.”