Commissioner's Update - August

3rd September 2013

These meetings give us the opportunity to discuss and share views on strategic issues and best practice.

I was pleased to visit the Monmouthshire Multi Agency Centre this month. The Monmouthshire Multi Agency Centre in Abergavenny is a one stop shop offering free and confidential advice and support for people suffering from, or at risk of, domestic abuse. The work going on at the Centre is extensive, and vital in supporting those in our communities who may be at their most vulnerable. The MAC team are experts in what they do and I would really encourage anyone who thinks they would benefit from their assistance to get in touch.

This month we announced a new arrangement with Bargoed Town Council. Town Council staff will be moving into Bargoed Police Station where they will work alongside the local Neighbourhood Policing Team. We have had no choice but to review our estate against the backdrop of meeting budget requirements, and I think this is the best possible arrangement to suit both parties and to help us secure the future of the station which I know is very important to local residents in Bargoed.

It has been good to see some of the ways funding from my office is being spent in the Gwent area. This month my Deputy, Paul Harris, visited Senghenydd Youth Drop In Centre (SYDIC) and Abertillery Crime Prevention Panel which both received funding from the Police Property Act Fund. SYDIC offers diversionary activities for youngsters in effort to reduce crime and anti-social behaviour, and the Panel demonstrated partnership working at its best in Llanhilleth by repairing damage caused to Zion Miners' Chapel which had been targeted for burglary. Local agencies and businesses got on board to replace stolen items and improve security.

The month came to an end with the launch of the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner (OPCC) smartphone App. This is the first App of its kind in the UK, it provides residents with an interactive look at the activities of my office and I across Blaenau Gwent, Caerphilly, Monmouthshire, Newport and Torfaen.

It is vital that we stay current and move with the times. We will continue to use tried and tested methods of communication with local residents, but I think the App opens up our work to a new audience who perhaps haven't come across us before, and makes is easy and convenient for them to stay up to date with what we are doing on their behalf.

Take a look for yourselves; search "Ian Johnston" on the App Store, or click on the following link: 

There are plans for roll out to other devices in the very near future.

As always, if you wish to contact me for any reason, or if you have any comments or suggestions about policing in the Gwent area you can e-mail me:, telephone me 01633 642200, fax me 01633 643095 or write to me at the address below:

Ian Johnston
Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner
Police Headquarters
NP44 2XJ

You can also follow my office on Twitter @gwentpcc which provides day to day updates of my work on your behalf, or Facebook.