Weymouth street pastors are set to complete their 500th patrol – as they take to the streets of Weymouth on Saturday 15 June 2013.
Now a familiar part of the local night-time scene in Weymouth in their blue uniforms, the volunteers from churches in Weymouth and Portland will be out and about in the town centre.
They are there to help anyone in need of assistance and have helped hundreds of people in the five years they have been operating in the town. From those who are a little worse for wear at the end of a night out to those who need someone to talk to, the street pastors can be found in the town every Friday and Saturday.
Ken Crafer, Weymouth street pastors co-ordinator, said: “We have time to spend with people and are able to help in a number of practical ways for those who get into difficulty during a night out. For example, we might be able to help reunite them with friends or help them make a phone call home; we also carry bottles of water to help revive those who have consumed too much alcohol.
“The common question we often get is why do street pastors do it? We live in a fantastic party town which can be a really enjoyable place for both locals and visitors alike. The Street Pastor initiative is a great way for those within the local churches to help bless their local community and make the town a great place for people to come and celebrate”.
Inspector Les Fry, Neighbourhood Inspector for Weymouth and Portland, said: “We really value the work that the street pastors do in Weymouth; they make a significant difference with their presence on the streets at night, helping to keep people safe.”
Councillor Geoff Petherick, Brief Holder for Community Safety at Weymouth and Portland Borough Council, said: “We would like to congratulate Weymouth street pastors on their 500th patrol and thank them for their invaluable work and contribution to helping vulnerable people in Weymouth town centre at night.
“The borough council is a member of the Dorset Community Safety Partnership and is committed to help reduce violent crime, particularly alcohol-related violence.
“In the 2012/13 period, violent crime in the borough decreased by 14 per cent, which we believe was the result of successful partnership working taking place in the borough. The fantastic work of the street pastors also contributed to this.”