Councils spend £315m on CCTV cameras
Councils spent at least £315 million on installing and operating CCTV cameras over the last three years, campaigners said today.
Birmingham City Council, home of the controversial Project Champion scheme which saw more than 200 surveillance cameras installed in two largely Muslim neighbourhoods, topped the list of local authority big spenders with £10.5 million on CCTV alone, Big Brother Watch said.
The figures, provided to the campaigners following requests under the Freedom of Information Act, showed the total £314,835,170.39 spent by 336 local councils on installing and operating cameras between 2007/08 and 2009/10 could have paid the salaries of more than 15,000 nurses.
Alex Deane, the campaign group's director, said: "This is a shocking figure. Public money is being wasted on snooping surveillance that does next to nothing to prevent or solve crime.
"We are being watched more than ever before, and we're being ripped off into the bargain.
"British taxpayers will be scandalised to see their money being thrown away like this in the current economic climate."
More than 80 councils failed to respond and 15 said they did not operate any public-facing CCTV cameras.
West Midlands Police apologised over the Project Champion scheme and chief constable Chris Sims admitted the force got the balance between counter-terrorism and excessive intrusion into people's lives "so wrong".
The cameras, some of which were hidden, sparked anger from civil liberties campaigners and residents in Sparkbrook and Washwood Heath in Birmingham, where they were predominantly installed.
The scheme was organised by the Safer Birmingham Partnership, an initiative including West Midlands Police, Birmingham City Council and other agencies.
The partnership has acknowledged it should have been more explicit about the role of the city's Counter Terrorism Unit in setting up the network of 218 cameras.
The number plate recognition and CCTV cameras were financed under a counter-terrorism initiative but were marketed to locals as a general crime prevention measure.
Today's report showed the 10 authorities that spent the most on CCTV between 2007/08 and 2009/10 were:
:: 1. Birmingham- £10,476,874.00.
:: 2. Sandwell - £5,355,744.00.
:: 3. Leeds - £3,839,675.00.
:: 4. City of Edinburgh - £3,600,560.00.
:: 5. Hounslow - £3,573,186.45.
:: 6. Lambeth - £3,431,301.00.
:: 7. Manchester - £3,347,310.00.
:: 8. Enfield - £3,141,295.00.
:: 9. Barnet - £3,119,020.00.
:: 10. Barking and Dagenham - £3,090,000.00.
- 1 Notting Hill Carnival: Woman shares selfie after being ‘punched in face for telling man to stop groping her’
- 2 Keira Knightley topless: Usually conservative actress does own take on #Freethenipple campaign for Interview Magazine
- 3 Daily Show's Jon Stewart destroys Fox News for its Ferguson coverage
- 4 When elitism grips the top of British society to this extent, there is only one answer: abolish private schools
- 5 Terror threat level raised to severe as PM warns Isis risk could last for decades
Keira Knightley topless: Usually conservative actress does own take on #Freethenipple campaign for Interview Magazine
YouTube video posted by Isis militants shows 'execution of 250 Syrian soldiers'
Botched ice bucket challenge leaves man critically injured after plane drops hundreds of gallons of water
Terror threat level raised to severe as PM warns Isis risk could last for decades
Isis 'A Message in Blood' video shows beheading of Kurdish man in Iraq
Robin Williams Emmys tribute led by Billy Crystal criticised for including 'racist' joke about Muslim woman
The Rotherham child abuse scandal is a tale of apologists, misogyny and double standards
Scottish independence TV debate: Pumped-up Alex Salmond bounces back in bruising second round against Alistair Darling
Do you realise just how foolish the UK looks?
Ukip Douglas Carswell defection: Tory MP jumps ship to join Nigel Farage
When elitism grips the top of British society to this extent, there is only one answer: abolish private schools
- < Previous
- Next >
£45000 - £69999 per annum + Benefits + Bonus: Harrington Starr: C# Algo-Develo...
£60000 - £70000 per annum + Benefits + Bonus: Harrington Starr: Senior Data Sc...
£50000 - £80000 per annum + benefits+bonus+package: Harrington Starr: Data Sci...
£350 - £400 Per Day: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Our client based in Cent...