A Safe Place to go for vulnerable people in Abingdon

Released on July 26, 2018

People in Abingdon now have somewhere to go if they are feeling lost, worried or threatened, following the launch of Safe Places in the town. 

Premises taking part in the Safe Places scheme display a distinctive Safe Places logo in the window. If someone is feeling vulnerable, then specially trained staff will be available help keep them safe. 

Under the Safe Places scheme people can request a special card to carry when they are out and about.  This provides details of someone to contact if they need help.  However, you don’t need to have a Safe Places card to enter a participating location and ask for assistance. 

So far, nine premises in the town have signed up to take part – to see their locations visit safeplaces.org.uk/member-schemes

Safe Places launch in Abingdon

If you or someone you know wishes to request a Safe Places contact card, or you are a business interested in becoming a Safe Place, please email Vale of White Horse District Council’s Community Safety Team via communitysafety@southandvale.gov.uk or call 01235 422593.

The Safe Places scheme is supported by the South and Vale Community Safety Partnership, Oxfordshire Family Support Network and Age UK Oxfordshire,

Cllr Elaine Ware, Cabinet Member for Community Safety at Vale of White Horse District Council, said: “Safe Places provide people with a safe place to go if they are feeling vulnerable while visiting the town centre. Not only does it give people a safe place to go but also provides vital reassurance that help will be available if someone needs it.  We are now looking forward to extending the scheme to Faringdon and Wantage later in the year.”

Jan Sunman, from Oxfordshire Family Support Network, said: "Oxfordshire Family Support Network is really pleased to see this scheme extended to Abingdon. Families we support who have relatives with learning disabilities are aware that their family members are often the target of bullying, verbal abuse or harassment in their local communities. The knowledge that their relative can go to a Safe Place to seek help is very reassuring, it gives people with learning disabilities greater confidence when out and about. It also offers helps all who may be vulnerable in our local communities."  

Notes for editors:

The South and Vale Community Safety Partnership is made up of representatives from the following organisations - South Oxfordshire District Council, Vale of White Horse District Council, Thames Valley Police, Oxfordshire Fire and Rescue Service, Oxfordshire County Council, Public Health, NHS Oxfordshire, Soha, Sovereign Vale Housing, and Thames Valley Probation Service.

Training for businesses which have signed up to the Safe Places scheme has been provided by Oxfordshire Fire and Rescue Service.  They will also monitor Safe Places to check how people are using them and will help promote Safe Places in schools and colleges to vulnerable young people, and during Safe and Well visits to vulnerable people in their own homes.