Matthew Barber joined Abingdon Street Pastors on patrol to provide support to those on a night out in the town centre.
On Saturday 22 April 2023, Matthew Barber joined Abingdon Street Pastors on patrol in the town centre. The visit provided an opportunity for Matthew to find out how £2,000 of funding, awarded via the PCC’s Community Fund, supports Abingdon Street Pastors ongoing running costs including uniforms, training and consumables.
Abingdon Street Pastors was set up in 2011 in collaboration with the Church in Abingdon, a collaboration of 14 local churches, Thames Valley Police and the local town council. Street Pastors are out on the streets of Abingdon on Saturday nights to help, listen and care for those they meet. They work alongside Thames Valley Police and local businesses to help create a positive atmosphere for those having a night out, offering help to individuals by providing practical assistance to keep people safe.
Following his patrol, Matthew said “It was a pleasure to join the Street Pastors on a regular patrol of Abingdon town centre, to see first-hand how £2,000 of funding provides essential support to those out on the town on Saturday nights.
“I wish Abingdon Street Pastors all the best with their future work, and I look forward to continuing to visit more organisations in 2023 whose work supports my Police & Criminal Justice Plan for Thames Valley.”
Following this visit, Pat Mulqueen (Abingdon Street Pastors) commented that they enjoyed Matthew’s company and especially the opportunity to show him the ‘safe places’ gazebo that the Street Pastors operate in the Market Place on Saturday nights when they are on shift. The gazebo is part of the Safer Streets Initiative of the South and Vale Community Safety Partnership and the Abingdon Neighbourhood Policing Team, with the aim of increasing the safety of public spaces by offering help to anyone in need. During this visit, the gazebo provided a safe place to several individuals within the Abingdon community.
This visit was made as part of an ongoing programme of engagement work run by the Office of the Police & Crime Commissioner, which will organise regular visits with the Police & Crime Commissioner, partners and funded organisations throughout 2023.