I, John Litchfield, am the local Police Community Support Officer (PCSO) for Central Harbour, Cliffsend, Nethercourt and Pegwell Wards. I have been the Central Harbour PCSO since 2015. Before that I was based in Ramsgate’s Police station in York Street covering Cliffsend, Pegwell and Nethercourt. When PCSO Hollier left to join the regulars for Kent Police, I was asked to step into his boots and take control of the Central Harbour ward. Naturally I was a little apprehensive at first, following in PCSO Hollier’s Boots. I knew it would be hard as he had been in the role for eight years and had built up a good working partnership within the ward.
Since taking over, I have established a walk-in surgery once a month at Ramsgate Library between 10:30am and 11:30am. The next surgery dates are as follows: May 1, June 12 and July 10. Please keep an eye around town for posters and updates on twitter - @kentpolicethan
. I would like to say thank you to Ramsgate Library for allowing me the use of their facilities and making me feel welcome. Thanet Community Safety unit hold their regular Neighbourhood Engagement Meetings in Ramsgate at various venues. The date for the next meeting is: May 21, 7pm – 8pm at The Corner House Coffee Shop, Newington Road. Other venues to be arranged for August 20 and November 19 meetings. These meetings are attended by Local Police, council officers from various departments, KCC Wardens, as well as local councillors. All are welcome and it is an opportunity to speak to all agencies in one room.
As PCSO for Kent Police, I work shifts including weekends. There is no such thing as a typical day, each day is different and you never know what to expect. I am on call via two radios; one for Kent Police and one for Thanet Shop Safe. Thanet Safe Ltd is an independent organisation within Thanet with about 40+ users in Ramsgate alone. Thanet Safe allows subscribers to be able to contact myself, colleagues and Thanet District Council CCTV operators directly.
My first task each day is to check my local ward calls. These are the calls that may have come in whilst I have been off duty. Checking this will bring me up to date with anything that may have happened and may need resolving. I will also check my emails and respond where necessary. I also check messages that have been left on my phone.
I have a few vulnerable residents in my wards that I like to check on when the weather is inclement just to make sure they are getting all the assistance that they require. This may include me contacting other agencies to see if any other assistance can be found or contacting the local Salvation Army who may be able to assist with provisions.
I have been working closely again this year with the Winter Shelter, R.I.S.E project and DWP, assisting those that are either homeless or sofa surfing in the area and referring them to relevant agencies.
I am working on a couple of projects in Ramsgate, one of these being youth engagement with local clubs and associations and the other with Rebekah Smith, Ramsgate Town Promoter.
Over the last couple of years I have become involved in the Ramsgate Skate Park Project both within work and out of work. This has involved multi agency meetings and with Thanet District Council regarding how we can raise funds. Our aim is to raise £250k so we can improve the existing area with outdoor gym equipment, a multi-use sports area and street course Skate Park. So far we have purchased new basketball hoops, backboards and football goals are due to be in placed in spring this year. Last year we held a BBQ, which was well attended and I have arranged another one for the spring this year.
I will be holding my annual Allotment tool marking again soon. This was something I did with the assistance of Ramsgate Town Council and allotment plot holders. Each year, I attend all the allotments in Ramsgate and mark plot holders’ tools with a unique colour for each allotment and security codes. Should anything be stolen it will be visibly marked making items harder to sell on.
I hope this gives you an insight to what I do within my role as PCSO.