Stamford street pastors helping to make a big difference to the town

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good samaritans are making a big difference in Stamford at night over the weekends by helping drunken revellers.

Street pastors have been patrolling Stamford town centre on Saturday nights handing out water and helping people in a vulnerable state.

The volunteers, who are aged between 20 and 70, also clear away glass and ensure that lone revellers get home safely.

Since the scheme started in April, the pastors have picked up 272 bottles, swept up 60 loads of glass, given out 79 pairs of flip flops, chatted to 78 groups of people and 116 individuals.

Co-ordinator Anita Gordon gave a presentation to Stamford Town Council on Tuesday about the scheme’s success. Speaking in the town hall, Mrs Gordon said: “One statistic I haven’t got, which would be really helpful, and that is the one for what hasn’t happened as a result of street pastors. How many fights haven’t happened? How many girls haven’t cut their feet?”

The team comprises 30 volunteers from seven Stamford churches.

Mrs Gordon said that as well as the town centre the pastors went to The Meadows, the Recreation Ground, Empingham Road playing fields, the community orchard and Scotgate

The team helps ensure that girls are not left on their own and have a way to get home safely. They also help boys who are drunk.

The pastors clear up broken glass and glass bottles to prevent anti-social behaviour

and injuries.

They also hand out bottles of water and flip flops to help girls in high heels walk home.

The team on the streets are backed up by a prayer team.

Mrs Gordon said: “There was a time when a fight was brewing outside one pub, 10 lads were gearing up for it. We stand off in those situations as the safety of the team is paramount.

“We phoned through to the prayer team that something was going to kick off and asked: Can you start praying?

“We stood back at a distance and within a few minutes everything settled down and the groups dispersed.

“Some came over to us and had a chat and asked for bottles of water and nothing happened.”

Stamford’s police inspector Gary Stewart has praised the work of the volunteers.

He said: “I would like to thank them for giving their time up to help others. Our first-hand experience over Saturday night is to work hand in hand with them.

“They are making a welcome addition and support people who are vulnerable.”

For more information on the scheme e-mail or phone 07827 602499.