Businesses in Rye have installed a radio system to reduce crime by linking shops, pubs, cafes and restaurants to one another and the police.
Shop Watch enables information about suspected shoplifters, pickpockets and other criminals to be swiftly circulated.
Rye Town Police Community Support Officer Richard Perchard was hopeful the scheme would help to reduce crime in the town.
“Hastings, Battle and Bexhill-on-Sea all have effective Shop Watch schemes,” he said.
“Rye was in danger of being left behind and becoming an easy target.
“But now with the new system businesses and the police will be able to exchange information almost instantly.
“This will hopefully reduce crime and provide reassurance to those working in local shops.”
The scheme was first introduced in Rye more than 15 years ago but fell into disuse due to ageing radio equipment and a decline in participating shops.
But a recent survey of town businesses by Frank May from Rye Chamber of Commerce, revealed keen interest in reviving the scheme.
Funding for 15 new radio sets was obtained through the Safer Rother Partnership and the Sussex Police Property Act Fund.
The fund is made up of monies received by the police from property confiscated by order of the court and then sold.
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