Marked and unmarked police vehicles parked in front of police headquarters

Making county roads safer

The East Midlands and East of England Road Safety Summit has taken place in Lincolnshire this week, giving Police and Crime Commissioners, road safety experts and local transport officers a forum to discuss strategies to make our roads safer.

The event highlighted schemes from around the region that are being put in place to help cut the number of road accidents.

One of the projects on show is the scheme run by Northamptonshire Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner Stephen Mold that allows local community groups to apply for grants of up to £5,000 to improve road safety in their communities.

The Road Safety Community Fund supports initiatives that positively affect the Commissioner’s road safety priorities, including speed reduction, anti-social road use, distraction driving, and initiatives that improve road safety around school gates.

This year, community groups and parish councils have already received more than £25,000. This has enabled them to buy Vehicular Activated Signs (VAS) and Speed Indicator Devices (SID), install traffic calming measures and has funded signage, parking buddies and lollipop provisions to improve road safety around some of our county’s schools.

Alison Holland founder of Brightwayz, an organisation that has supported schools and community groups in devising road safety plans said: “The Road Safety Community Fund is a great source of funding which communities and schools can access to help improve road safety in and around their locality.

“We are hugely supportive of the Commissioner’s commitment to achieving safer roads in Northamptonshire and are keen to see more schools securing funding to deliver activities such as School Play Street events, Park and Stride scheme and the purchase of bikes and bike sheds for children to use. I encourage anyone wanting to address road safety issues to apply for a grant and help to make our county’s roads safer.”

‘Vision Zero,’ a strategy that has radically cut road deaths in Sweden since it was created in the 1990s, was also discussed at the Summit. Some areas of the UK, including Cambridgeshire, are already implementing Vision Zero and shared their experience with the other attendees.

Stephen Mold said: “The harm and loss of life on our roads is a real cause of concern. The number of incidents in our county each year is still far too high, and I know this is a concern to communities across the county.

“The Summit gives us the opportunity to gain experience from others and bring ideas that have succeeded in other places that we can bring back to Northamptonshire to tackle road safety.”

To apply for a grant, visit the Northamptonshire Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner’s website ( and go to Grant Schemes.

Complete the application form and follow the guidance on supporting material. Email your completed application to

Service that gives a Voice to victims and witnesses

Becoming a victim of crime can have a deep and lasting impact. Whether or not someone reports that crime to the police, they may need specialist help and support to move on.

Last year, Voice, the free, confidential service delivered by Northamptonshire Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner Stephen Mold to support victims and witnesses in Northamptonshire received 43,856 referrals for support.

Overwhelmingly, people helped by Voice speak positively about the service at the end of their journey, with 96% of adults helped by Voice saying that they would recommend it.

The service Voice gives is not one size fits all: a variety of specialist support and help is available, from a simple listening ear to more complex intervention for someone whose life is threatened by domestic abuse and serious violence.

Making contact

The details of everyone who reports a crime to the police are automatically passed to Voice. But you don’t have to report a crime to be able to access support – you can make direct contact with Voice over the phone or online, however serious the matter you want help with.

Matters stay confidential, unless what is being disclosed means that someone’s safety is at risk.

Fiona Campbell, who leads Voice for the Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner, said: “Some people just want to express how they feel, their shock at being burgled for example, and they don’t need anything more. For others, an incident can have a much longer-term impact.

“Sometimes, they don’t want to share how they are feeling with family or friends, so Voice can provide emotional support to help them start to recover.

“At Voice, we work with someone to give them the help they need, whether that is a listening ear, or more practical support to help them feel safe and secure.”

Fiona said: “The criminal justice system can be complicated and a difficult experience for someone to navigate. We will support someone right through that process, referring them to other agencies if they need it, or collaborating with police and the Crown Prosecution Service to offer special measures if they are vulnerable or intimidated.”

Victims and witnesses of more than 1,000 cases in the court system are being supported every month.

Voice for Victims wins national quality mark

Voice for Victims and Witnesses has been awarded a national quality mark in recognition of the high standards of support offered by the service to victims of crime and people affected by serious road traffic incidents.

Voice is the service delivered by Northamptonshire Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner Stephen Mold to support victims, who can be confident that excellent support is available to help them recover.

Stephen has a responsibility to ensure that the needs of victims and witnesses are placed at the very heart of the criminal justice system. He has recently brought Voice back in-house, so that it is even better placed to connect and co-ordinate between all the services and organisations that support victims and witnesses in the county.

Now Voice has been awarded the Victims Choice Quality Mark by Supporting Justice CIC in recognition of the “high standards of care and support offered” and the way in which staff made people feel “valued and listened to”.

Stephen Mold said: “I know that every victim, and every witness, will be different and need different support. Voice is independent of policing and the staff provide a high-quality service that can range from quite simple support, to helping people with serious or complex needs. I am confident that the staff make a difference to the lives they touch.”

Specialist support on domestic abuse

The Sunflower Centre, which sits within Voice, has a staff of Independent Domestic Violence Advisors – IDVAs. The IDVAs have specialist knowledge and understanding of the risks associated with domestic abuse, and how it affects not just the victim, but their family.

The advisors are specially trained in crisis intervention and can offer practical advice and support to victims of domestic abuse. They help a victim put plans in place to keep themselves and their family safe. They can arrange help and support with a case that is going through the criminal justice process and provide access to legal advice, emergency accommodation and emergency orders.

Specialist Crisis IDVAs have been working in the Force Control Room alongside Northamptonshire Police on Friday and Saturday evenings between 5pm and 2am – a peak time for calls about domestic abuse.

The Crisis IDVAs help call handlers and police officers to deal with domestic abuse incidents as they happen. The IDVAs speak to victims and provide one-to-one support on the phone, or at a property, if the perpetrator of the violence is no longer there, with the aim of ensuring that the victim stays safe and reducing the likelihood of further abuse.

Within the IDVA team is a specialist in supporting people with complex mental health issues, along with a Diversity Champion who ensures that women with different ethnic or cultural backgrounds receive support that meets their needs.

Northamptonshire Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner Stephen Mold said: “Domestic abuse is a complex area with an enormous impact on the lives of too many people. Through Voice, our specialist IDVAs offer such a wealth of support, and connection into other agencies, that help to reduce the risk of future crime and help victims to make informed decisions about their future.”

Sunflower is jointly funded by the Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner, North Northamptonshire Council, West Northamptonshire Council and the Northamptonshire Integrated Care Board.

Second SNOvan on the run to improve night-time safety

A second SNOvan has hit the roads of Northamptonshire and is now ready to provide a safe space for people who might need help while enjoying a night out in Kettering.

The SNOvan (which stands for Safer Nights Out) is now parked in Horsemarket in the town centre on the last Friday of the month, and every Saturday between 10pm and 3am.

The van is funded by Northamptonshire Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner Stephen Mold as part of a programme of work to make the night-time economy safer and protect vulnerable people.

The Kettering SNOvan follows the introduction of the first SNOvan in Northampton. And as is the case there, the Kettering van will be an operating base for volunteer safety group the Northampton Guardians.

The Guardians give their own time to give care that helps keep people safe and frees up emergency services to focus on the highest risk cases, and on tackling perpetrators of crime. They will also work with the Kettering Street Pastors, who are established in the town.

Gill Goodship, of the Northampton Guardians, said: “We are grateful for the support of Stephen Mold and his office, along with the other organisations that we partner with. We will work closely with them to continue to improve the safety and well-being of everyone in the night-time economy.”

Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner Stephen Mold said: “We want to reduce the risk of someone coming to harm and help to create a calm and comfortable atmosphere for everyone enjoying a night out. The partnership of the SNOvan and the Guardians has boosted safety in Northampton. I hope it will have the same impact on the night-time economy in Kettering.”

SNOvan factfile

Since January 2023, the Guardians have given more than 1,900 hours of support on the SNOvan. And since the SNOvan was launched in December 2021, the Northampton Guardians have helped at least 1,200 people in a variety of ways, ranging from supplying water or warmth, first aid, or helping them get home safely.

New grant scheme launched to tackle knife crime and youth violence

A new grant scheme is making up to £10,000 available to voluntary and community sector organisations for projects working to tackle youth violence and knife crime in local communities.

The new grants are available through a partnership between the Office of Northamptonshire Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner Stephen Mold, and West Northamptonshire Council (WNC).

The grants are open to registered charities, voluntary or community groups, constitutionalised clubs that engage with young people, and not-for-profit organisations can submit an expression of interest form to West Northamptonshire Council outlining their project to be considered for the funding.

The closing date for applications is 25 September 2023.

Projects can be focussed on prevention or intervention – for example promoting community safety, deterring potential offenders or providing support and resources to at-risk individuals and groups, to stop them becoming involved in violence and crime.

Northamptonshire Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner Stephen Mold said: “Communities are often best placed to be effective and understand how best to prevent crime and support young people in their area. I am certain that investing in these groups will be a powerful tool in tackling violence.”

If you would like to speak to the West Northamptonshire Community Funding Grants Team about your project or your eligibility to apply for this grant, email: including your contact telephone number, as a telephone conversation can sometimes clarify a question
more efficiently.