Wacton Village Hall Trustees
Minutes of Meeting on 21st February 2018
Present: Calvin Goreham (Chair), Peter J. Reason [PJR] (Secretary),
Rev. Heather Wilcox,
1. Apologies: Peter Jacques; Absent: Pat Reynolds [PR] (Treasurer).
2. Minutes of the meeting 15th January were agreed and signed.
3. Matters Arising:
Following the burglary between 16th and 18th November, the Crime
Prevention Officer was invited to inspect the hall. This he
did on 18th January which formed the basis for his report and
recommendations submitted on 30th January. The full report is
attached as Appendix A to these minutes. PJR presented a summary
of the major points, attached as Appendix B.
The committee decided to adopt the majority of the recommendation,
the exception being planting below windows, installing CCTV
and alarming the oil tank. The comments made in the report about
the tank caused concern and will be the subject of further consideration.
Still on the subject of the break-in, PJR reported that Martindales
had attended site and fitted the replacement Parish Office door.
CG observed that there was difficulty in locking/unlocking.
PJR to call Martindales back. CG reported that the insurance
claim had been settled in the sum of £1550. A replacement
filing cabinet would be the first purchase.
4. Matters for Consideration. None
5. Correspondence: None
6. Treasurer's Report:
In the absence of the Treasurer there was no report.
7. Building Progress:
Additional feet for the handrail have been acquired and erection
of the handrail will now proceed.
The hot water boiler in the kitchen is leaking and a repair
or replacement tap is required before further use
The Social Club requested a pedal bin for kitchen and a supply
of black sacks. This was agreed.
PJR reported that the website manager had asked how many years
the archive of village hall minutes should be displayed on the
website. 3 years was thought sufficient as, long as there was
a full hard copy record held on file. PJR confirmed that such
a record is on file and all minutes since 2007 were also saved
in Word format.
9. Date of next meeting – 19th March at 19.30pm.
Meeting concluded at 20.30
Crime Prevention Survey report - Wacton Village Hall - 18/01/18
Wolsey, Richard <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Tue 30/01, 14:12
Apologies for the slight delay, which have been due to urgent
operational demands. Thank you for allowing me the time to meet
with you on Thursday 18th January to assess existing security
measures at Wacton Village Hall as a result of recent criminality.
What must be considered is the difference between security during
closed hours and those vulnerabilities that come into play once
the village hall is unlocked and visitor access is mostly unrestricted.
Please find below my assessment and I have put my comment/recommendations
in bold text:
External perimeter/lighting/fencing/oil tank/windows/doors/keys
Wacton village hall is a large
wooden structure (stud work inner walls) with bookable public
community facilities including hall/kitchen/toilets/meeting
room and private store rooms and Parish Clerk’s Office.
Within the hall is also a locked/alarmed Licensed facility for
intoxicants belonging to the Wacton Social Club (I would encourage
the contents of this report is shared with their committee).
The building is slightly elevated and set back off the main
village roadway and to the side of the building is a hard standing
There are no
street lights to provide beneficial borrowed lighting cover
yet there are dwellings opposite the roadway which do provide
natural surveillance cover to the front of the building. The
car park is covered with security lighting from the gable end
of the building but there is no other security lighting to cover
the three other elevations. I recommend the fitting of security
lighting, to be low energy vandal resistant ‘dusk to dawn’
sensored security lights as they provide improved light protection
during the hours of darkness rather than on-off PIR devices.
This approach seeks to remove dark voids and introduces a layer/barrier
of low level light into and across which the criminals won’t
wish to work for fear of being seen/heard. When considering
security lighting, due regard should be given to preventing
a nuisance to residents and minimising light pollution. I would
recommend a security light features in the front porch to help
identify persons wishing to hide within it.
There are no
physical restrictions to prevent access to the rear of the building
and criminal or anti-social behaviour can take place easily
out of sight from passers-by. I recommend the fitting of n/less
2m lockable gated welded mesh security fencing between the hall
and rear walling at the western end of the building to permit
authorised access to the rear and storage. At the eastern end
I also recommend the fitting of similar welded mesh security
fencing between the hall and metal storage shed and again between
the storage shed and rea brick wall. In this way open permeability
has been drastically reduced with restricted gated access and
protection to the rear windows has been provided. This will
help keep the criminal out in public view and deter them if
there is an improved chance of being caught.
external oil tank is positioned in view of passers-by and that
is good for natural surveillance to take place upon it and the
contents. Whilst the appearance of the tank itself might appear
unsightly, do not enclose it with fencing as this will only
serve to provide a hiding place for the criminal to use. I
would encourage you to consider fitting a specific oil tank
alarm device to help protect against loss. Consider the
fitting of Police approved alarms by checking Secured by Design
member companies for such devices.
glazed uPVC windows and entrance doors are without attack resistant
laminate panels and are vulnerable to attack and thereby potential
access. Additionally, the keys for window locks are being habitually
left in the locks, leaving the windows vulnerable to internal
tampering and without laminate glazing protection, windows are
vulnerable to attack from outside. I wholly recommend that no
window keys are left in locks once the use of the building ceases
and are kept safe away from the windows. Equally, the daily
procedure for closing and locking windows, entrance doors and
Fire doors should be conducted robustly.
I recommend the fitting of internal security window
film to provide extra glazing protection and potentially mirrored
film to prevent visual intrusion into the building from the
rear. I would encourage you to make contact with SSAF window
film specialists to discuss such protection.
The defensive under planting of windows with thorny
shrubs can be an effective deterrent for those wishing to force
their way in through such openings.
Internal window blinds are very good to keep out
visual intrusion and to protect modesty/privacy of activity
Excepting internal storage rooms, Parish Clerks Office and Wacton
Social Club store, all inner doors are unlocked. Consideration
should be given for the provision of door locks on all rooms
to help prevent casual unauthorised intrusion during communal
activities/events and when the building is closed and locked
for business. Where the facility is fitted with a security alarm
system, the locked closure of internal doors puts additional
barriers in the way of the criminal and thereby helps remove
available time they have to get to their intended target (See
I would recommend the hall store room door is fitted
with a 5 lever mortice lock to BS 3621 standard and a further
x2 security bolts are fitted top and bottom to help strengthen
the door. I would propose the Social Club door reflects no less
than this approach to protect its assets.
I would also recommend the Parish Clerks Office
door is similarly fitted with a 5 lever mortice lock to BS 3621
standard and a further x2 security bolts fitted to strengthen
the door. Window lock keys to be removed. Please ensure that
all internal and external door locks and window locks are checked
for proper closure/locking prior to finally leaving for the
day, to protect against internal tampering.
I am uncertain
as to the security strength of the externally fitted key safe
by the front entrance. It is known that the Master key safe
model can be opened without force so I would encourage a rethink
of what you keep inside it or where you keep the key safe for
access. Police approved, attack resistant key safe models are
available if you check Secured by Design member companies for
such a device.
The key safe fixed to the rear of the kitchen door
provides a safe place in which to place keys and is accessible.
However, it is not of a high security standard. I would encourage
you to consider what is left inside this safe and the effect
the loss of the contents would be if the safe was forced open
and contents removed. Please consider fixing it where it is
out of sight and out of the criminals mind as it can be readily
seen through the kitchen windows from outside.
Internal/furniture and valuables
All equipment/furniture and personal belonging are of value
for the village hall and users alike and any criminal losses
should be reported to the Police. Circumstances of loss should
be reviewed by the committee in order that lessons can be learned.
The provision of lockable personal lockers might be useful to
consider to keep users/visitor belongings safe whilst involved
in activities. (See property marking below)
Alarms/ CCTV/property marking
of the building being entered outside opening hours and forced
access gained to the Parish Clerk’s Office/contents, I
would recommend the fitting of a security alarm system (covering
both door and window). The provision of an internal security
alarm system will significantly reduce criminal time inside
during closed periods and I would recommend the fitting of an
internal security alarm system that will protect the external
doors, vulnerable internal doors e.g. service cupboard &
Parish Clerk’s Office and vulnerable windows (particularly
the rear). I can only direct you to consider companies who are
approved by National Security Inspectorate (NSI) or to provide
such security alarm protection.
Security Systems & Alarms Inspection Board (SSAIB)
CCTV has its place but it’s generally used as an electronic
witness to record activity and nothing else. Unless actively
monitored, such a basic system is limited and you would need
to decide what exactly you want it to protect? This is called
an ‘Operational Requirement’ and would form the
basis of what your CCTV needs are?
I am happy to return to discuss this item further
but consider (list not exhaustive):
§ The cameras should be fixed to evidentially capture
torso features straight on with sufficient lighting to fall
over the facial features (so that wherever possible offenders
can be readily identified or recognised)
§ The cameras must be able to capture high quality
imagery in daylight/darkness
§ Recording in the public domain and the placing of
overt, public facing signage is a legal requirement and is also
vital to reinforce the message that you have protective security
measures in place and that those who need to see the warning
signs inside and out can do so
§ All footage from your CCTV system can be classed
as evidential and users of the system must be proficient in
their use including the speedy retrieval of footage as evidence
§ The recording device must be secured away from
unauthorised access to prevent evidential loss
§ Please link into the Information Commissioners
Office in order to understand your liabilities and guidance
when using CCTV
I would encourage you to consider physical security upgrades
before investing in CCTV.
the rudiments of property marking including both overt (e.g.
Post coding& property name) and a more covert ‘forensic’
type applications e.g. (Smartwater or SelectaDNA). Security
marking and associated overt warning signage can be very effective
in deterring criminality and covert forensic marking kits can
mark smaller items of value including electronic devices and
more overt marking can protect larger items such power tools-maintenance
Essential however, is the use of fresh, well placed and meaningful
warning signs that indicate to the public/criminal that security
measures have been taken and it’s not worth their while
to steal. We want the criminal to see these warning signs and
the best place is along the public facing perimeters e.g. roadway
For valuable items I recommend that there is a full inventory
with good photo images and full descriptions, in case of theft
Other/lone working-suspicious behaviour/vigilance
yourself and other village hall members work within the hall
(or potentially respond to security alarm activations), I would
encourage that they are provided with a cost effective personal
attack alarm. In such scenarios the device can help distract
an assailant as well as attract attention for help. Challenging
suspicious behaviour is a feature of protection for the hall
but do not put yourselves at risk of attack. In the event of
emergency (e.g. crime in progress) tel 999 and any suspicious
activity or behaviour tel 101.
Your best form
of protection will be to maximise the benefit from the recommendations
above but also include the active surveillance benefits from
vigilance by the committee, users of the facility, local residents,
visitors, local interest groups (e.g. schools) and passers-by.
In this way suspicious behaviour/activity can be challenged
and/or quickly reported to the police.
I left you
with a few leaflets covering aspects of crime prevention covered
during my visit and are reflected in this report.
The measures I’ve commented upon above will collectively
reduce criminal opportunity and time they might have inside
your village hall to steal during opening hours or after opening
hours having forced their way in. Crucially, these are layers
of protection which will be enhanced where an appropriate security
alarm system is fitted. I hope the above gives you the chance
to consider security measures more fully. Remember the total
elimination of crime cannot be guaranteed but these few recommendations,
if implemented, should reduce the opportunity for crime to be
committed. As such they also need to be considered alongside
any Fire Prevention advice, Fire Safety Certificate conditions,
Health and Safety Regulations and Safe Working Practices as
they will take precedence over Crime Prevention advice.
Village Hall Security
Richard Wolsey, the Architectural Liaison Office with Norfolk
Police inspected the Village Hall at our request on 18th January.
I forwarded his report to Trustees and I have summarised his
report for ease of discussion
His general impression was that the hall was merely a wooden
'shed' with standard glazing which could be breached by any
intruder with sufficient intent whatever defences were put in
place. The aim should be to provide as little incentive and
as many obstacles to entry as possible, thereby altering the
risk/gain equation in our favour.
Summary of Recommendations
On-Site Valuables – reduce to an absolute minimum
Fencing – the rear of the building cannot be observed
and would afford intruders complete privacy. Erect 2m weldmesh
at both ends at rear of building with lockable gate for access.
Planting – prickly shrubs below all windows.
Lights – in the absence of street lighting security lights
installed to front and west gable.
Locks - 5 lever standard with additional bolts top and bottom
to all rooms/cupboards in which anything of value is routinely
stored and all padlocks to be close shackle type.
Windows – remove keys and use mirror film, particularly
Key Safes – upgrade porch and kitchen safes. Reposition
kitchen safe away from easy view.
Security Alarms – priority Parish Office door and window.
Then Service Cupboard and rear windows.
Security Markings – all valuables with 'DNA' type markers.
Visibility – make all security upgrades public through
clear, accessible signage.
Oil Tank – should be modern bunded design with alarm.
(He noted that fuel theft is often effected breach of the tank
wall with fuel removal by bucket resulting in significant waste.
In our case pollution of the ditch was a risk as was the intervention
of the Environment Agency.)
Alarms – to external doors plus Parish Office, Social
Club and Service Cupboards.
CCTV – only consider when physical upgrades complete.
Not mentioned in report was the observation made during inspection
that leaving a light on in the hall when not in use, coupled
with open blinds would be a deterrent. To quote, 'when did you
see a supermarket closed and unlit?'