More than 140 people attended the Forest Heath Crime Prevention Panel 2015 awards ceremony and saw the actions of community heroes recognised.
They included representatives from parish and district councils, United States Air Force officers and Suffolk Police.
There were award eight categories, with 28 certificates being won by individuals or organisations from the Forest Heath district. The awards recognise the achievements of members of the public, along with police, partner organisations and the voluntary sector.
Among the winners were Kerry Shoop who runs a dance group in Brandon for 3-18 year-olds; Rob Spencer a Newmarket security guard who located a thief who had stolen an elderly lady’s handbag; Mr and Mrs Samborski from Mildenhall, who called police after hearing suspicious activity at a neighbour’s house and helped prevent it from being burgled and Ian and Tania Owen, Staff Sgt Blake Broekhove and Staff Sgt Scott Caldwell who all came to the assistance of a man who had suffered a heart attack in Mildenhall and helped to save his life.
The awards were:
Forest Heath Business Crime Partnership Award – Presented by Cllr Ruth Bowman
Winner: McColls Shop and Leslie Foreman Shop Manager and Staff - MILDENHALL
During the past year a shop in St Johns Close, Mildenhall was experiencing issues around anti-social behaviour and shop-lifting. The Safer Neighbourhood Team supported the shop with expert advice around issues that were causing the anti- social behaviour and shop-lifting. The shop took on the recommendations, they removed the old canopy which was encouraging youths to hang out underneath it and renovated the exterior of the shop to compliment the new community centre situated nearby. The store layout was improved to reduce easy theft. The positive attitude of the store manager and staff could be reflected in the reduction of crimes from 16 offences in August 2014 to six crimes this August.
Community Partnership Award – All presented by Inspector Alistair Torkington
Winners: Kerry Shoop – BRANDON
Kerry Shoop runs a dance group in Brandon Church Institute. It is a fantastic group with children age ranging from 3-18 boys and girls and in excess of 344 students and still growing. Various dance classes from ballet, tap and contemporary to cheerleading and Street dancing are taught. Throughout the year the students take exams, present shows including one being performed at the Apex. Kerry also takes her workshops to Schools and she attends charity events and local events to entertain the public, as well as also setting up competitions. She also organised a celebrity workshop last year with Twist and Pulse from Britain’s got talent providing the professional input. This has an effect on the children and youths of Brandon, keeping them off the streets and providing them with a positive interest.
John Kennedy and Charlie Snare – BRANDON
This award is being presented to two volunteers who have achieved some incredible work in regenerating a forgotten area in Brandon. The remembrance fields in Brandon is a beautiful area which holds the bowls club, sports centre, social club, scouts, Brandon allotments and the lakes. The lakes had been neglected for many years until these volunteers decided to take responsibility for removing dead trees, debris from the lake and river and clear overgrown weeds which allowed the lake edge to be seen clearly; thus reducing the danger to animals and children. Once the initial ground work was carried out there was a need to maintain the area. A partnership between the fishing club, which used the lakes was formed. Gates/fences were erected to protect the area from ASB and stop any danger to children. These winners have worked with other committees involved in the remembrance playing fields and have helped to reduce further ASB/criminal damage and theft to the skate park, allotments and sports field areas and sought advice and assistance from the local safer neighbourhood team and crime reduction office. They have truly transformed the area which is appreciated by many Brandon residents and visitors and has been acknowledged by the environmental agency as a 5 star development fishery. They also support vulnerable youngsters and encourage an interest in fishing.
Lisa Pearson, Jane Blackwell & Susan Dunleavey – BRANDON
Presented to three volunteers who support people caring for family members in Brandon. The group has been running for three years which initially was organised through a government project called “Time for You”, run by Turning Point with one year’s funding. After the initial support finished, these recipients continued the meetings volunteering their own time, using a small amount of funding left to pay for outings etc. They meet in Brandon once a month, for approximately one and half hours with on average seven carers. Through the group they offer support to carers who are able to talk with like-minded people in similar situations, allowing them to “off-load” their concerns without being judged. They organise afternoon tea, Christmas meals etc, often offering their own transport to those that don’t have any.
PCSO Shirley Bradnam – NEWMARKET
This award is nominated by PCSO Hannah Rogers and supported by her Supervisor, Sgt Rob Diver. It goes to a colleague who currently works for Suffolk Constabulary. She goes above and beyond her duties and deserves this award, as recognition of the support and assistance she provides both on and off duty. On numerous occasions, she has helped the elderly and vulnerable residents, living within the Newmarket Safer Neighbourhood Community area. She is a person who is trusted by the community and colleagues alike. A perfect example of her selflessness is whilst off duty a male, who is in his 80’s and well known to the recipient approached her. He explained that he was suffering due to the toilet in his supported housing flat not working effectively for the past six days and not been fixed. She immediately telephoned the housing association, where she expressed her concerns for his welfare, which resulted in repairs were made later that same day. Whilst on and off duty, she provides reassurance and support to people and where appropriate will liaise with other agencies, in order to provide any after care. This award is presented for her work outside her role as Police Community Support Officer, within the Newmarket Safer Neighbourhood Team.
Andrew Sheldrick – MILDENHALL
Presented to someone who for the past four years has been volunteering as a mentor at Mildenhall College. His work involves introducing pupils to the mini firebreak course. This is a six week course which aims to develop social skills including teamwork as well as building confidence. He also acts as mentor to many children and offers support to both pupils and staff. This is alongside his role as Governor. The children at MCA have grown very fond of him, often asking for his time. But none are more grateful that the staff of the BEST area for his constant pleasant demeanour and support. When I spoke with the school he was described as a ‘Top Bloke’. His knowledge comes from working as a firefighter in Mildenhall and Bury St Edmunds areas for many years.
Eileen Jacob Special Trophy – Presented by Eileen Jacob
Winner: Special Constable Gary Lee – MILDENHALL
Based at Mildenhall he is recognised for his actions whilst dealing with a call in regards to a drink driver. The driver had previously made off from a police officer and injuring the officer. The special constable pursued the vehicle but the driver disbanded his, the special constable then continued on a foot pursuit, putting his own safety aside to successfully detain the driver, knowing that the he had previously injured a police officer. The offender was later found guilty at court for various offences. This special constable has also been presented with the Godfrey Cup for his exceptional performance.
Brendan Fulham Crucial Crew Newcomers Award – Presented by Margaret Fulham
Winner: Special Constable Jay Dixon - Forest Heath Crucial Crew
This award is presented to a Special Constable who supported crucial crew for the first time this year. His support given around the car crime scenario was notably recognised by panel members as keen and professional and enabled the scenario to run smoothly and proficiently on the day they attended. They provided support in their own time and ensured the professional running of crucial crew.
Brendan Fulham Crucial Crew Award – Presented by Margaret Fulham
Winners: Special Constable Joe Whitehead - Forest Heath Crucial Crew
This award is presented to a Special Constable who volunteered to help at Crucial Crew for initially two days. He was such an asset for those days that he volunteered to extend his time to support the event for the rest of the week. His versatility, professionalism and enthusiasm were always noticed. Panel members also soon recognised that he has a huge talent for acting as criminal and the ability to change his disguise quickly when participating in one of the scenario roles.
Libby Fox - UK POWER NETWORKS
This award is presented to an individual working for UK Power Networks, who provide the vital electricity safety scenario at crucial crew. They always try to ensure that they are able to attend Crucial Crew to present the scenario and it is clear that they show an enthusiasm for ensuring that the children are clear about safety around electricity. They are always professional and keen. Many of the children attending comment on how much they learnt in this scenario and feedback from teachers and group leaders is always positive and complementary of this presenter.
Aaron Tooke – SUFFOLK FIRE & RESCUE SERVICE
Crucial Crew Business Contribution Award – Presented by Inspector Alistair Torkington
Simon Perry and Steve Legg for DISPLAYLITE, HUNTINGDON
This is a new award. This business is being recognised for their continued support to Crucial Crew which has enabled one of the scenarios to be brought into the 21st Century. For the past three years this company have provided “free of charge” the use of expensive display screens, hard drives and software that allow the children to interact and discuss issues around criminal damage and anti-social behaviour, making it more interesting to present and learn from. The scenario has become well-liked by the children and revitalised from the use of basic wipe boards and photographs on paper. The technical support provided and free transportation of the equipment from Huntingdon is very much appreciated. They have been innovative and provided suggestions and input on how to utilise the equipment and software to its best ability, whilst keeping us informed about new technology that may be suitable.
Police Partnership Award – Presented by Detective Superintendent Andy Smith
Winners: Daniel Fairbrother - NEWMARKET
On the February 26 this year he had been shopping in Newmarket and noticed that a male had been acting suspiciously. He spotted the male walking out of a store with a large plastic bag with what looked like handbags in it. The male then walked to a car and returned to the shop for several more trips. Previously working as a store detective he was able to recognise the traits of a thief and his quick actions in calling the police, whilst providing clear and concise information allowed the apprehension and arrest of the offender. The offender had stolen significantly high value handbags; in fact seven bags with a total value of £687.93 the offender was charged and found guilty with theft from shop.
Hayley Danylak – MILDENHALL On the March 30 2015 the individual witnessed a friend, who was upset and under the influence of alcohol, climb some scaffolding in the Market Square, Mildenhall. Without any thought for their own safety, they climbed the scaffolding and held on to him at the top. There were no ladders making it very difficult and the scaffolding poles reached roof height, making it quite dangerous too. They kept things under control and reassured their friend, until the police arrived and then the fire service were able to assist with the retrieval of them both. Though this winner was clearly distressed by the situation they showed great courage and compassion.
Gary Register and Alfie Cousins – MILDENHALL
On March 31 2015 both of these winners were driving in convoy southbound along the A11, when they witnessed a road traffic collision. A single vehicle was being driven northbound along the A11, they witnessed it losing control, hitting the central reservation at speed, before rolling over several times and crashing into the woods by the war memorial. Both of them, without any hesitation, pulled off the side of the road and rushed across the A11 to aid the stricken driver. The police attended shortly afterwards but it was clear that both these two men were best placed in order to carry out the necessary first aid to the injured driver who was slipping in and out of consciousness. The driver’s first language was not English but they offered him reassurance and kept him calm. The ambulance arrived quickly and both males were able to answer the relevant medical questions in order to help the driver receive the appropriate care. The driver was taken to hospital and in my view if it hadn’t have been for the quick, caring and concise actions of these winners, the driver’s situation may have been different.
Rob Spencer – NEWMARKET On Wednesday January 21 this year an elderly lady was returning to her car in Tesco car park, Newmarket. She was aware of a male acting suspiciously and whilst putting her shopping away noticed that her handbag was missing from the car. She followed the suspicious male and stopped at Tesco to inform the security guard Rob Spencer of the incident. The guard followed the suspect and located him hiding in nearby toilets and soon after the handbag was recovered close to the area where the suspicious male had been found. The male was charged and found guilty of theft from a motor vehicle.
This award is going to an individual who was quick thinking and accurate when providing information of a crime taking place. On the 6 May this year the individual was at home when they spotted two males ringing a neighbours doorbell, they then witnessed the males put some gloves on and watched them walk around the side of the property and look through the windows, to then walk round the back of the property, leaving one of them loitering on the corner appearing to act as a look out. They called 999 immediately and proceeded to described very clearly the actions and provide a good description of the males including watching them carrying some property from the house, they continued to give the directions the males headed in, which is where officers located them moments later. The two males were charged and found guilty of burglary and both sentenced to imprisonment with one of them servicing a long sentence. Suffolk police and the crime prevention panel awards, would like to recognise the pro-active and positive attitude of this individual.
Mr and Mrs Rafal Samborksi – MILDENHALL
On Saturday August 28 2015 Mrs Samborski was at home in Beck Row when she heard some noise coming from her neighbour’s house. She was aware that her neighbours were away so went into her garden to investigate, this triggered her outside light and the noise stopped. She went back inside but the noise started again, Mrs Samborski (whose first language is not English) called her husband and told him and asked him to call the police. Mr Samborski called the police and informed them that someone was attempting to break into his neighbour’s house. He then made his way quickly to the property along with the police and dog unit who confirmed that there had been an attempted burglary, but unfortunately the dog unit lost the tracks of the offender. Despite a language barrier, Mrs Samborski’s quick thinking and that of Mr Samborski’s contact with the police and attendance to the property clearly prevented the offender gaining entry to the empty property.
EXCEPTIONAL AWARD Lee Till – NEWMARKET
This person has received two other panel awards in the past few years and because of this, the award is being recognised as an exceptional police partnership award. Working as security staff in Newmarket High Street can sometimes be a difficult and unpredictable job, as it was in the early hours of January 1 2015. Lee saw a man, holding a glass bottle in his hand and acting in a physical threatening manner towards two other males. Without any concern for his own safety he rushed towards the male and managed to restrain the offender as officers arrived. Purely through his quick thinking and professional training, he potentially prevented a very serious assault. The offender was charged and found guilty of causing an affray. Neighbourhood Response Patrol officers would like to thank and present this Exceptional Police Partnership Award to Lee for his continuous support and assistance.
Forest Heath Compassion in the Community Award – Presented in order by Cllr David Bowman; Cllr Carol Lynch; and Detective Superintendent Andy Smith with Mr Ronnie Taylor
Winners: Tatum Cartner, Ryan Yallop and the Cartner family – MILDENHALL
On December 27 2014, two teenagers were walking along the street, when they saw a male collapsed. Other people had passed by without stopping, however they rushed over to see if they could help, they realised the elderly male was gravely ill so one of them ran to get nearby parents, whilst the other stayed with the male, supporting him and taking care of his dog, which was with him when he collapsed. The parents quickly called an ambulance whilst rushing to the nearby collapsed male with their daughter. The mother and daughter then proceeded to give critical CPR to the male until PC Kemp and PC Button arrived and continued with the CPR until the ambulance arrived. It was without a doubt very courageous of the two youngsters to stop and help, remaining calm and responsible in order to then seek further aid from their parents and older sister. Due to the immediate medical assistance given by the mother and daughter the male was kept alive and taken by ambulance to hospital. Sadly the gentleman died later in hospital but everyone’s actions allowed his family to say goodbye to him. These awards are presented. To Tatum Cartner and Ryan Yallop for your immediate response. to Mr Jonathan and Mrs Lisa Cartner, Nicki Cartner (the Cartner family) for their initial medical assistance and support to the victim.
Nikki and Mark Humphries - RED LODGE
In July this year there was a sudden death of an elderly Mildenhall resident. He owned five parrots and didn’t have any family living nearby. Contact was made with the RSPB but they were not able to assist and the family were not in a position to house the birds themselves. PCSO Tristan Askew was aware of a resident in Red Lodge that kept parrots, so made contact with them to seek some advice. He was surprised to hear that they ran a charity called ‘Love Your Grey’ which was an African Grey rehoming charity with over 2,000 members. He passed on the details of the charity to the family members who then made contact with the charity and between them the parrots were collected and re-homed the next day. This meant that the family did not have to worry further about the birds during what was already a distressing time for them. This award is presented to Mr and Mrs Mark and Nikki Humphries for their support.
Ian and Tania Owen, Staff Sgt Blake Broekhove & Staff Sgt Scott Caldwell – MILDENHALL
This award is presented to four individuals who acted quickly and worked together. On Saturday August 15 this year, Ian Owen had been walking home when he saw a male riding his bicycle suddenly collapse and hit his head on the kerb. He called his wife, Tanya to take his dogs and call the ambulance and started CPR. He had previous training in the army and had recently completed a first aid training as part of his lorry driving licence. At this point Staff Sgts Scott Caldwell and Blake Broekhove were driving through Mildenhall when they spotted the collapsed male with Mr and Mrs Owen. They quickly parked and rushed towards them and offered to help with CPR and at this point there was no pulse. Staff Sgts Broekhove and Caldwell continued with CPR by remembering the ‘self aid buddy care’ that they had been taught through their USAF training. The man was only responding with grasping breaths and they continued for 15 minutes until the ambulance arrived and then assisted the paramedics initially with holding IV bags and equipment until a second ambulance arrived along with the police and soon afterwards the air ambulance which landed nearby. With the support of all four people, the Ambulance Service and East Anglian Air Ambulance the life of the man was saved.