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Neighbourhood Watch

Neighbourhood Watch

Neighbourhood Watch is one of the biggest and most successful crime prevention initiatives ever.  Now involving more than 90,000 households in Hertfordshire, it is based on the simple idea that you and your neighbours can help to reduce crime and create a safer and better place to live, work and play.

By being a good neighbour, you can help make your community more secure by looking out for your neighbours; keeping an eye on their homes when they are out; watching out for those who are elderly or vulnerable; and receiving and sharing crime prevention advice to help keep you and your neighbours safe and your homes and property secure.


Neighbourhood Watch members receive regular local policing updates and alerts from their local policing team via email, or by telephone if preferred, using Hertfordshire’s award winning OWL communication system.

Your local policing team will keep you informed about what is happening locally and how you can help, for example to look out for stolen property or help find missing people.   They will also tell you about local policing events; update you about crimes, incidents or concerning trends in your area; alert you to appeals for information or witnesses; and keep you up-to-date with the latest crime prevention information and advice to share with your friends and neighbours to help you to keep yourselves and your property safe.

Neighbourhood Watch members can do as much or as little as they like.  You can also volunteer to be a street coordinator, looking after a number of homes and acting as a point of contact.

Crime is often lower where there are active Neighbourhood Watches, and Hertfordshire Constabulary actively supports Neighbourhood Watch which, together with police, make Hertfordshire a more hostile environment for criminals and a safe place for residents and businesses.

Penny Brown, Neighbourhood Watch Liaison Manager, said:

"We’ve had a bumper year for boosting our membership, and have been working hard with local Watch Coordinators and Safer Neighbourhood Teams across Hertfordshire to achieve this.  We’ve increased our membership by more than 15,000 households in the past year and we can now directly contact around one in six households across the county using our OWL messaging system.

"As well as looking out for our neighbours, reporting suspicious incidents, and acting upon and sharing crime prevention advice circulated on OWL, Neighbourhood Watch members across Herts have contributed to many successful outcomes this year, including finding several vulnerable missing people (one of whom was found by an eagle-eyed member within an hour of the OWL message being circulated).  Members have also responded to alerts about suspicious persons and have helped us to identify and catch burglars and rogue traders – Trading Standards colleagues recently successfully prosecuted a rogue trader as a direct result of responses to an OWL message.

We’ve received lots of positive feedback from members about how much they appreciate our local OWL alerts and updates, and hopefully this has contributed towards the recent nationwide survey results showing that Hertfordshire was rated the best force in the country by residents in relation to 'local police do a good/excellent job.'

"Thanks very much to all our members for your support over the past year, and let’s continue to work together to keep our county safe."

Police and Crime Commissioner for Hertfordshire, David Lloyd, said:

"The best way to beat crime is for us to all work together. The police need help from members of the public, businesses and other agencies to catch criminals and prevent crime.

“Neighbourhood Watch is a great way to keep your home and your community safe, as well as help the police reduce crime. There are already thousands  of residents and businesses who have joined up to various watch schemes and are already reaping the benefits of being part of a community united against crime and looking out for one another.

“You too can be part of a crime fighting community and make your street even safer by joining a Neighbourhood Watch scheme or even setting one up yourself.

"As well as Neighbourhood Watch schemes, there are a number of other watches people can join or set up. These include Business Watch, Rural Watch, Horse Watch, Allotment Watch, Canal Watch, and Dog Watch."


There are several ways you can join: visit  to register; email your local Watch Liaison Officer at  or call the police non-emergency number (101) and ask to speak to your Watch Liaison Officer.

You can find out more by contacting your Safer Neighbourhood Team, your local Watch Liaison Officer at, or by visiting the HertsWatch website at

HertsWatch is a voluntary body which represents Neighbourhood  and Other Watches throughout Hertfordshire, forming a link between District Neighbourhood Watch groups and the Police. HertsWatch looks after the interests of District Neighbourhood Watches.   Each District’s Watch Co-ordinator sits on the panel of HertsWatch along with representatives from the police and the Police and Crime Commissioner's office.