Council's car parks win crime accolade

EXTRA parking places for motorists in Calderdale have received official recognition with two council car parks gaining the ParkMark award.

The award, which is issued by the British Parking Association and is valid for 12 months, has been given to car parks in Victoria Street, Halifax, and Mill Lane, Brighouse.

An independent assessor from the British Parking Association, working with a West Yorkshire Police crime prevention officer, visited the sites in February to assess the crime risk and the security.

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Calderdale Council's cabinet member, economy and environment, Councillor Amanda Byrne, said: "It is great that a further two of our car parks are now ParkMark standard; making a total of 26 in the district.

"The fact Calderdale has been awarded so many certificates reflects the hard work that has been put in to achieve this standard."

The Association of Chief Police Officers (Acpo) launched the secured car parks scheme in 1992 as part of their Secured by Design initiative.

The aim was to encourage those responsible for car parks to improve security standards as a means of reducing criminal activity, the fear of crime and the perception of crime.

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Calderdale's crime prevention officer, Pc Keith Williams, said: "The ParkMark award recognises the facilities and security of car parks because people want to park their cars in the knowledge they have left them in a safe, secure environment.

"Parking services will continue to monitor these and indeed all other car parks and attempt to bring all our car parks up to this the standard."

He added: "The car parks that have been given the ParkMark seal of approval have been designed with security and safety as an integral part of the package with good lighting and surveillance."

Car parks that receive the award will prominently display ParkMark signage as a mark of commitment to the scheme and users of the facility.