A trailblazing combination of three key elements will make Gloucester one of the best connected cities in the UK
CCTV, wi-fi and enhanced mobile communications are all part of a pioneering project which was launched by BT and Gloucester City Council in 2015 driven through by Cllr Jennie Watkins based on recommendations by the team at Marketing Gloucester, who lead on the digital strategy for the city.
The development – the first of its kind in the UK – included the introduction of a free public wi-fi service for tourists and people living and working in Gloucester city centre. Laptops, tablets and mobile devices will all be able to connect to it.
There is also be a new state-of-the-art CCTV service and control room, and improved mobile phone coverage for 4G and other new services.
Councillor Jennie Watkins is cabinet member for communities and neighbourhoods at Gloucester City Council.
Paul Coles says the project makes Gloucester one of the best connected cities in the UK.
He added: “It’s great to see Gloucester pioneering this approach. We hope to repeat it in other towns and cities.”
Installation of wireless access points and 50 new high-definition CCTV cameras has taken place across the city.
The new digital service provides clearer images, enable security teams to zoom in on potential trouble spots, and gather evidence with high-quality images.
Councillor Jennie Watkins says the development is fantastic news for both locals and visitors to Gloucester – “Once it was evidenced to us by Marketing Gloucester that we could leverage the funding we had budgeted for CCTV to also provide a step change in WIFI and 4G digital infrastructure, it become obvious to me that we should seize the opportunity especially since it would allow us to pursue our goals for digital inclusion and to be a connected city.”
On the back of this innovative solution, Gloucester City Council scooped the prestigious Gordon McLanaghan Security Innovation Award at the MSC annual educational security seminar on Monday evening (14th November 2016) staged at the Bristol Hotel. The independent chairman of the judging panel Professor Kamal Beckoum, the Head of School Computing and Technology at the University of Gloucester delivered the verdict of the judges at the formal dinner where he identified the multiple benefits the new Gloucester City Council CCTV system creates with a more secure environment (through higher quality CCTV) and a greater access to free public wifi along with improved 4G coverage
The award was made by The Right Honourable Lord Mayor of Bristol, Councillor Jeff Lovell.
The photo shows (from L – R) Roger Hardiman (consultant), Amy Kedward (BCC Emergency Control Room Manager),Gill Ragon (Gloucester City Council), The Lord Mayor of Bristol, Jeff Lovell, Derek Maltby (MD – Global MSC Security), Andy Kilmurry, (Gloucester Police), Ed Pomfret (Gloucester City Council)
The council beat off stiff competition from Cumbria Police, the Metropolitan Police and North Somerset Council.
In addition to winning the prestigious Bristol Blue Glass Trophy, the winners were awarded a cheque to the value of £1,000.