Street Pastors play vital role

Hastings Street pastors have carried out 600 night patrols helping people to stay safe since the group was founded in 2010.

The organisation is holding its 6th Commissioning Service at Christchurch, Blacklands and St. Andrews Church in Laton Road on Friday November 6 from 7.30pm.

Nine new Street and Prayer Pastors will be inducted into the Christian group and all are welcome to come and join the celebrations.

Hastings Street Pastors were formed in February 2010 and have patrolled the late night streets of Hastings town centre and the Old Town twice a week since, adding up to 600 duties so far.

With the induction of the nine new volunteers, the group now has a total of 75 volunteers who give up their time to keep people safe and secure.

Street Pastor Coordinator Martin West explained: “Our ethos is not to preach or evangelise but at all times to listen to, care for and help everyone we come into contact with.

“We are humbled that at least six lives have so far have been saved as a direct result of our intervention.

The team works closely with Hastings Police and Hastings Borough Council in what we refer to as the Urban Trinity and have gained a favourable reputation throughout the town.

“Teams go out into the night time economy from 10pm until around 3am, and are often seeing freely giving away tea, coffee, snacks, bottled water and the now famous Street Pastor flip flops to ladies who have lost their shoes or heels.

The Commissioning Service on Friday November 6 will finish around 9pm when tea and cakes will be served.

Inspector Chris Veale, of Hastings Police, said: “The Street Pastors are an asset to both the police and the people of Hastings.

“The Street Pastors support our community by patrolling key areas in the town on a Thursday, Friday and Saturday night when the night-time economy is at its liveliest. The Street Pastors volunteer their time and are to be commended for the pacifying effect their presence has within the town.

Further information about the group’s work is found by contact coordinator, Martin West, on 07964 167870 or by email to hastings@streetpastors.org.uk. The website can be found at www.http://streetpastors.org/locations/hastings.

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