A SENSE of safety for visitors to Middlesbrough has resulted in the town’s bus station becoming the first in the North East to gain national recognition.

The Safer Bus Station Award highlights standards of good practice in security and reassurance for passengers and staff, and also recognises operators’ efforts to reduce crime and disorder, as well as fear of crime.

Middlesbrough Bus Stations welcomes up to 30,000 visitors each and every day. An independent survey of passengers found:

During the day

  • 70% of people felt very safe.
  • 26% of people felt fairly safe.
  • 3% of people felt fairly unsafe.
  • 1% of people felt very unsafe.

On an evening

  • 50% of people felt very safe.
  • 40% of people felt fairly safe.
  • 5% of people felt fairly unsafe.
  • 5% of people felt very unsafe.

The Safer Bus Station award scheme is owned by the Association of Chief Police Officers – Secured by Design and is managed by the British Parking Association.

Phil Taylor, the North Eastern Area Manager for the Scheme, said: “You just need to look around the bus station to see the things which make it such a good example.

“The lighting, cleanliness and signage are clear for all their customers to see. The station is always clean and tidy and these together with exemplary management practices ensure it is safe and the management and staff are dedicated to making the Middlesbrough bus station a pleasurable experience for every customer or visitor.”

Cleveland Police Crime Prevention and Architectural Liaison Officer Steve Cranston said: “This is the first bus station in the region to be awarded this accolade and should be seen as a positive initiative in ensuring the on-going safety for residents of, and visitors to, Middlesbrough.”

Accepting the award, Cllr Tracy Harvey, Middlesbrough Council’s Executive Member for Environment, said: “I’d like to say thank you to the staff at the Bus Station who work hard day-in day-out to create a welcoming atmosphere in which people feel safe.

“They do this not for recognition but because they care and so it is doubly pleasing for us all that the Bus Station and their efforts have been recognised in this way.

“We are delighted people feel safe and it is not just about feeling safe from crime and anti-social behaviour, the Bus Station is also a Dementia Friendly site with staff fully trained in dealing with dementia, which is an absolute priority of Middlesbrough Council and Mayor Dave Budd.”