Closure of cannabis factory at former Irish Club among successes of community crime crackdown

police line do not cross

A month-long crime crackdown by the Bedford Community Policing team has resulted in a number of successes, including the closure of a cannabis factory at the former Irish Club on Midland Road.

This morning, as part of a targeted Day of Action, the Bedford Independent headed out with the Bedford Community Policing team as they carried out a warrant on a property in Goldington.

The team have been targeting five wards in the Borough, undertaking a high visibility Day of Action in each area focused on tackling anti-social behaviour, drug dealing, county lines gangs, organised crime and cannabis factories.

The Community Policing team pull together intelligence from all reports of incidents, highlighting how important it is for members of the public to report any anti-social behaviour to the Police.

“We would encourage everyone to report any suspicious activity to us,” said Inspector Sam Hunt.

“The more people that report anti-social behaviour in their neighbourhoods, the more accurate the picture we can build-up of the policing needs of different areas.”

Today’s Day of Action centred around Goldington and Putnoe, with a warrant being carried out, a number of high vis patrols, plus community engagement activities to reassure residents and business owners.

Inspector Sam Hunt

“The visibility of Police in the targeted wards has led to an increase in the number of reports from the public,” said Inspector Hunt.

“It’s given residents the reassurance that we do take concerns seriously and will act accordingly.

“The community teams are passionate about the areas they cover and really want to eradicate the anti-social issues.”

Recent Day of Action results include:

  • Five warrants throughout Bedford
  • Three closure orders on properties for three months (two of which led to the safeguarding of a person being cuckooed and the recovery of a taser)
  • Two cannabis factories; including one at the former Irish Club, now called Athena Palace (pictured below) containing over 1,500 plants in and another one in Barkers lane
  • Four strategy meetings to safeguard vulnerable people
  • 164 intelligence reports submitted
  • Four arrests
  • 28 stop searches
The former Irish Club turned cannabis factory (image: Google Maps)

Unfortunately, this morning’s warrant did not end with an arrest, but the team take the rough with the smooth.

“Situations change all the time, so even the best information doesn’t always lead to a result,” said Inspector Sam Hunt.

You can report suspicious activity using Bedfordshire Police’s online reporting tool or call 101.

You can also fill out their online have your say survey to share your concerns about your local area and inform their local patrols.

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