A knife amnesty being held across Nottinghamshire will feature increased support from community partners.
A church, a number of court buildings and a civic centre have joined Nottinghamshire Police and existing partners to host amnesty bins during the latest national Operation Sceptre, which runs from Monday, September 16, until midnight on Sunday, September 22.
It means there are now 25 places across the county where people can deposit their unwanted knives, up from 15 at the last amnesty in March, making it even easier for people to stop weapons falling into the hands of criminals.
A total of 635 bladed weapons were handed in at the last amnesty, and Assistant Chief Constable Kate Meynell, of Nottinghamshire Police, said she hoped the growing support from the community would lead to more weapons being taken out of circulation.
She said: “Knife amnesties are a chance for people across Nottinghamshire to play their own individual part in making their communities a safer place to live, work and visit by removing potentially dangerous weapons from the grasp of those who might use them to cause fear and harm.
“This will be the third amnesty we have held in 18 months and each time we have seen more weapons handed in and more support from external partners wanting to help us to make a difference. That is really encouraging because it shows more and more people are recognising that they can have an impact and that every weapon recovered has the potential to save lives.
“It is also pleasing that we now have so many amnesty bin locations that are in community locations, because we recognise that not everyone feels comfortable visiting police stations.”
The new partners include Mansfield Magistrates' Court and Newark and Sherwood District Council’s Castle House civic office in Newark.
As well as the amnesty, Nottinghamshire Police will also showcase the work it does to tackle knife crime all year round with a series of events during Operation Sceptre all next week.
This will include educational sessions on knife crime for schoolchildren, community weapons sweeps and proactive operations.Paddy Tipping, Nottinghamshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner, has been successfully lobbying for additional funding to tackle the scourge of knife crime.
He said: “Every knife and sharp instrument that is handed in is off the streets and no longer a potential deadly weapon. But the police cannot tackle knife crime in isolation, enforcement alone will not succeed.
"I am grateful to see so many of our partners joining the multi-agency operations against knife related violence, working to make people aware that merely carrying a knife is highly dangerous and helping offenders to rehabilitate and move away from a life of violence and criminality.
“Help us to make our streets a safer place by using this opportunity to surrender these lethal bladed weapons and, if you know or suspect that someone carries a knife, please contact your local police or Crimestoppers.”
People can hand in their knives without fear of prosecution for doing so for the duration of the amnesty. They are advised to check the opening times of their nearest participating amnesty bin location before they visit. Anyone wishing to hand in an oversized item such as a sword should go to a participating police station rather than a partner agency site.
The participating stations and partner agency locations are as follows:
Broxtowe Shared Services (formerly Beeston police station)
Broxtowe Police station (no front counter service but call the yellow phone outside for access to the amnesty bin)
Bulwell police station (no front counter service but call the yellow phone outside for access to the amnesty bin)
Hucknall Police Station (no front counter service but call the yellow phone outside for access to the amnesty bin)
Kirkby-in-Ashfield Partnership Hub
Mansfield Magistrates' Court
Mansfield police station
Newark police station
Newark & Sherwood District Council's Castle House, Newark
Nottingham Magistrates' Court
Nottingham Tribunals Court
Nottingham Youth Court.Ollerton police station (no front counter service but call the yellow phone outside for access to the amnesty bin)
Retford Shared Service (Retford police station)
Worksop Police station (Shared service)