Calls for linking of CCTV systems

Friday, 2 January, 2009

An MP has raised concerns that CCTV in Bury St Edmunds' Cattle Market scheme may not be fully linked with town centre cameras.

David Ruffley, MP for Bury St Edmunds and Stowmarket, wrote to police and council chiefs last month over fears that CCTV operators will not be able to control cameras on the new arc development.

Problems with the scheme's CCTV were first highlighted in November, when councillors delayed approving the cameras after raising questions about links between the two systems.

Last month, developers Centros said their system would be controlled and monitored from its on-site management office, with St Edmundsbury Borough Council's control room able to receive images from the cameras.

But council operators would not be able to direct or control the arc's cameras, although a phone connection would be installed between the two control rooms.

Mr Ruffley said: 'This looks like a lack of joined-up thinking. We have an excellent CCTV control room in Bury and now that the town centre is being expanded it would seem logical that this network would extend.'

He added: 'It worries me that a criminal could be followed by CCTV in the town, only to drop off the radar as they enter the new development.

'While I am reassured that there will be links between the two networks and that images can be uploaded, it would seem far more sensible, in the long run, to have one network covering the town- or at least live feeds shared between the two.'