Bangor Police Officers recently received High Sheriff Community Service Awards at the Gwynedd awards ceremony, which was held at Bangor University. Awards were given to Sergeant Dana Baxter, PC Lisa Thomas and PCSO Liam Roberts from Bangor who were nominated for their ongoing work in relation to Operation Wax, which is aimed at tackling the problem of aggressive begging in Bangor.

The annual High Sheriff Awards for Gwynedd and Clwyd pay tribute to the work being done by Police Officers and Community Support Officers who have contributed to projects which improve their local communities. A number of personal awards were also given as well as Crimebeat Project of the Year award in both areas.

‘Operation Wax’

Operation Wax has targeted the offence of ‘aggressive begging’ in the Bangor area which has been causing concern in the local community

Numerous complaints had been made to police from members of the public and shopkeepers about beggars trawling the Upper Bangor area and the city centre area asking for money, people were often being ‘pestered’ and felt intimated near cash machines which created ‘an unwelcoming environment’

‘Beggars’ were often abusive and are generally anti-social, using foul language towards members of the public when they were stood by cash machines. Many of the individuals were gaining money by begging to fund a drug habit and not engaging with the services that are there to help them with their long-term complex issues.

The operation to reduce aggressive begging has involved plain clothed officers who have targeted the people who were “causing concern” in the area.

Photo: PC Lisa Thomas receives her award from the High Sheriff