Weekly Crime Summary:

The following is a local policing update for the Rural Flegg Villages neighbourhood

Weekly crime summary 15 – 21 July 2015

A five armed friend is returning to Great Yarmouth and Gorleston beaches lending an extra hand to families to help keep their children safe.

Sandi the Starfish was launched last summer – with a seafront flag for families to use as a meeting point if they are separated, special Sandi the Starfish wristbands with space to write a parent’s mobile number and local shops displaying Sandi’s logo so that children know where’s safe to go if they are lost in the town.

Sergeant Dan Smith explained that losing a child even momentarily can be a terrifying experience for the whole family.

“We see lots of families who come to Great Yarmouth and Gorleston to enjoy the beaches during Easter and summer holidays, and occasionally a child can wander off or become disorientated as they are playing. Although the vast majority of missing children are found very quickly it is still a terrifying experience for all the family.”

“The idea of having a flag with a recognisable character as a meeting point for families if one of them gets lost came from PCSO Sandi Greenacre, who was a member of the Hunstanton team before she sadly died in 2013. Sandi saw how distressing losing a child can be – both for the parents and the child. She was keen to develop ways to help families reunite and advice for parents on what to do if they lose their little one.”

“We decided that this would be a great way for her legacy to live on and that’s how Sandi the Starfish was born.” Sergeant Smith added.

Sandi the Starfish wristbands will be available from Great Yarmouth and Gorleston Police Beach Patrol Huts, Great Yarmouth Tourist Information Centre, Great Yarmouth and Gorleston Police Stations, PCSO’s and Police Officers.

Helpful tips for families planning a trip to the beach include:

Designate a meeting spot and make sure the whole family know to go there to wait if you are separated.

A Sandi the Starfish flag is located on the sea front and is designed to be seen by children from a distance. Show your child the picture of Sandi so they know what to look for.

Tell your child that if they get separated from you, they should go to the flag where they can wait for you or to find a trusted stranger, ideally someone in uniform, and tell them they are lost.

Use a Sandi the Starfish wristband and write your phone number on the inside of the wristband so you can be contacted if your child is found. Alternatively write your mobile phone number on a sticker or piece of paper to keep with them.

· Keep an up-to-date photo of them on your phone to show to officers so they know who they are looking for. Ideally take on a phone or a digital camera when you arrive at the beach to show exactly what they are wearing.

It’s vital to remember what they are wearing! Bright, eye catching clothing is ideal.

For further safety and crime prevention advice for your neighbourhood please visit www.norfolk.police.uk

You can contact us on 101 or if you think a crime is actually in progress then please always dial 999.