Council and police look at how to design out crime in popular park

A review of safety measures in a busy park is being carried out by Merton Council and the police after residents reported increased fears of crime.  

In a safety assessment starting on Monday (17 January), the council and police will look into how to design out crime in Wandle Park in Colliers Wood.

The park is on two historic walking routes – the Wandle Trail and the Nelson Trail – and is often used as a short cut by pedestrians and cyclists, as well as being popular with dog walkers.

Merton Council’s Cabinet Member for Partnerships, Community Safety and Tackling Crime, Councillor Agatha Akyigyina OBE, said: “We understand residents’ concerns about walking through Wandle Park, particularly on dark winter evenings.

“While simply installing street lights in the park may seem to some a good solution, others think it could lead to would be perpetrators of crime hiding in the shadows. This is why we want to do a more thorough assessment of the options available to design out crime and help people to feel safer while they are in the park.” 

Statistics published by the Metropolitan Police show that Merton is the fourth safest London borough and crime fell by over five per cent between January and November 2021, compared to the same period the previous year.