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Billingshurst Street Pastors are pleased to have received a grant of £1,000 from the Sussex Police & Crime Commissioner's Safer in Sussex Community Fund.

Patrick Perks BEM, Treasurer of Billingshurst Street Pastors, joined the Police & Crime Commissioner, Katy Bourne, and representatives from other local organisations who had also been awarded funding at a special 'Celebration Showcase' event held in Lewes on Thursday 19 June. Commenting on the funding award Don Newport, Chairman of Billingshurst Street Pastors, said: "We are delighted to have been awarded this grant from the Police & Crime Commissioner's Community Fund, which will support the ongoing work of Street Pastors in Billingshurst. The reassuring presence of our volunteers on the streets of the village has become a welcome and familiar sight.

The teams patrol both at lunchtimes and evenings on a regular weekly pattern and have been well received; they will listen to everyone, young and old, and provide help to anyone who needs it. This boost to our funds will assist with training and equipping new Street Pastors."

Commending Billingshurst Street Pastors on their successful bid Mrs Bourne said: "This is a great example of an innovative local project that aims to make our communities safer. The Safer in Sussex Community Fund was launched to help communities tackle crime and disorder and I am very pleased with the level of response we received during the first round of applications."

About Billingshurst Street Pastors

Street Pastors have been operating in Billingshurst since 2013 when they were formed by an initiative within the churches of the village. Contact with the community may range from a friendly chat to pointing people to an appropriate agency should they have a specific need. All Street Pastors receive comprehensive training and benefit from interaction with and training from among others, BEAT Responders Heartstart; HDC Youth Support Team; NHS Sussex Partnership and with generous help from Sussex Police who recently asked Street Pastors to assist with the launch of their Alcohol Awareness Campaign in Horsham town centre. Billingshurst Street Pastors operate under an arrangement with the Ascension Trust, the umbrella organisation responsible for Street Pastors which, since its formation ten years ago, has trained over 11,000 people for this important voluntary work both in the UK and overseas. An important part of the work is fulfilled by a team of Prayer Pastors who provide prayer support and back-up as required for the teams while they are out patrolling. The group is always keen to hear from local church members who would like to become Street Pastors or Prayer Pastors.

For more information about the Billingshurst street pastors please contact: Don Newport, Chairman, Billingshurst Street Pastors via email at don.newport@btinternet.com.

About the Safer in Sussex Community Fund

The Safer in Sussex Community Fund helps local voluntary and community groups tackle crime and improve community safety by providing financial support to projects and services that address the priorities outlined in the Police and Crime Plan. Awards of up to £5,000 will be granted for projects that meet the funding criteria following consideration by the Office of the Police & Crime Commissioner and approval by the PCC.

In exceptional circumstances the Commissioner will consider requests for funding above £5,000. Bids will be considered and funding awarded on a quarterly basis. For more information about the scheme and how to apply visit here.