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Free text message alerts for rural communities


Paddy Tipping (centre) with PCSOs Sharon Marsh (second from left) and PCSO Emma Swales together with Nick Houghton (left) and Andy Ward from VISAV Ltd

People living and working in three rural areas of Nottinghamshire can now receive news, information and appeals from their local police team straight to their mobile phone, thanks to a new text messaging pilot launched this month.

Anyone living in the Bassetlaw, Newark and Sherwood areas can register to receive free text message alerts from officers about issues affecting their area, including information about recent incidents and advice to help them avoid becoming victims of crime.

Nottinghamshire Police have launched the pilot thanks to funding provided by the Nottinghamshire Police and Crime Commissioner, Paddy Tipping.

He said: “Many people living and working in rural areas struggle to receive information from their local police in a timely enough way to be able to protect themselves as they are so heavily reliant on unstable mobile internet connections to access information online, through social media and by email.

“This new text messaging service will allow Nottinghamshire Police to share information with thousands of local people at the click of a button, bringing officers closer to the communities they serve and improving how they let local people know about the work being done to tackle rural crime in their area.”

Chief Inspector Andy Rooke, rural crime lead for Nottinghamshire Police, said: “We recognise that crime has a devastating impact on communities but those living in the most rural areas of our county can be particularly vulnerable which is why it’s so important that we explore every opportunity to put a stop to illegal activity and protect the communities we serve.

“The way our officers engage with local communities is constantly changing and this is an excellent example of how we can do something different to keep our rural communities informed and I would encourage anyone in the Bassetlaw, Newark and Sherwood areas to sign-up for these free alerts.”

The pilot will be run using the Neighbourhood Alert community messaging system which Nottinghamshire Police already use to share information via email with tens of thousands of residents and businesses across Nottinghamshire.

Mike Douglas from VISAV Ltd, the Nottingham-based company behind Neighbourhood Alert, said: “As our home police force, we are proud that Nottinghamshire Police and all other East Midlands police forces are embracing the cutting edge technology we provide which has already enabled over 100,000 people across the East Midlands to receive free, targeted messages of their choice to keep them informed about the issues that matter to them.

“We are sure that these tailored communications sent by text message will make a real difference to people’s lives and will be extremely useful in sharing information with local people across the more rural and isolated areas of Nottinghamshire.”

How to register

Anyone in Nottinghamshire can register to receive free email and text message alerts from Nottinghamshire Police by visiting www.nottinghamshire.police.uk/alert

There is no cost for receiving alerts by either text message or email and anyone registering will have complete control over what kind of information they receive, how often they receive it and whether they also receive alerts from other organisations using Neighbourhood Alert in Nottinghamshire.



Media Enquiries:   Sallie Blair - 01283 821012 / 07702 541401


Posted on Wednesday 16th March 2016
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