A NEW approach to neighbourhood crime-fighting has been launched.

Wrexham AM Lesley Griffiths spoke at the launch of the Online Watch Link (OWL) scheme in Hightown, Wrexham, which seeks to help community members work together in the battle against criminal activity.

Mrs Griffiths praised the innotivate approach of OWL, which is already in operation elsewhere in Wrexham, and met the real life barn owl which is the project’s mascot.

She said: “The scheme is a great example of how communities can come together to change things, and I was surprised to meet a real life owl at the launch, which was a great event.

“The OWL scheme represents a great a marriage between community action and new technology and promises a new, community-led approach to crime-fighting.”

OWL enables members and non-members of the Neighbourhood Watch to be part of a network that instantly shares information of incidents such as crime, or rogue traders, between residents.

In the scheme, information on incidents in the watch area such as rogue callers and anti-social behaviour is instantly shared among residents via a network who use the internet, text messages and phonecalls to keep themselves in the loop.

John Williams, chairman of Hightown Communities First, said the launch had been a great success.

He said: “The event was well attended by residents many of whom signed up to OWL recognising the importance of receiving information and advice, on community safety issues, to their computer, in Hightown.

“We hope OWL will go from strength to strength in Hightown and across Wrexham.”
Anyone interested in signing up for OWL in Wrexham should contact the Hightown Communities First team for further information on 01978 357583.