GMP launches instant alerts to support businesses in Rochdale

Date published: 19 December 2018

The Rochdale town centre, Milkstone and Deeplish neighbourhood policing teams have set up a mobile instant messaging group as part of their ongoing Shop Watch scheme for police and businesses to share information and send out instant alerts in order to crackdown on crime.

The group; which is open to shops, businesses and their staff in the town centre, allows members to share details, photographs, and describe suspicious activity or known shoplifters in the area.

Since the instant messaging group was launched at the beginning of December, 52 businesses have signed up, and it has already been a huge success with thieves being deterred, and arrests made for drug possession and shoplifting by police acting on information from the instant messages.

GMP Rochdale borough’s PCSO Danielle Doran, who introduced and set up the scheme, said “The mobile instant messaging group is an excellent example of the business community coming together to help one another.

“This is an effective means for the police and the stores to alert other businesses to suspicious behaviour or if there are known thieves in the area targeting multiple stores.

“It also provides the smaller private businesses who can’t afford additional security and who may have concerns for their personal safety with reassurance that they are not on their own, and the whole community is working together to try and deal with anti-social behaviour and criminality.” 

Neighbourhood Inspector Darren Callaghan said “Using modern methods to assist in the prevention of crime has been a great success so far and we have been able to build strong relationships with the Rochdale business community.

“As a result of activity there has also been increased interest in the town centre radio system which the messaging group enhances. A picture sometimes paints a thousand words and whilst there is a place for the town centre radio link for fast time communication, the instant messaging app allows for another dimension to be added to the crime prevention toolkit for commercial operators.”

Businesses in the town centre interested in signing up to the group are asked to email their shop name and mobile number to and the local team will provide you with further instructions on how to join the group.

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