Complaints by councillors that crime and anti-social behaviour in Monmouth is not being picked up by CCTV coverage brought revelations that some of the cameras in town are not working and others are being used for an ongoing police operation "which they are not prepared to discuss".

Councillor Terry Christopher raised the issue at Monday night’s town council meeting that in recent weeks there have been minor acts of vandalism and theft "and when we made enquiries at the Shared Resource Service (SRS) in Blaenavon, they could not provide any evidence of what’s going on."Why are we spending £14k a year on a system that is not monitoring the street?"Cllr Fletcher added there had been a number of break-ins in Monnow Street right underneath the cameras “and nothing has been done which proves the system is not working”.It was then that Cllr Jamie Treharne said that one of the Community Support Officers (CSO) had been down to the SRS centre in Blaenavon and had been told some of the cameras were not functioning and had been out of operation as “they take time to be repaired”.Cllr Christopher then replied that as co-funders of the SRS scheme, they should have been told when they weren’t working and added the council “should ask for a discount.“Bearing in mind the money we spend on CCTV coverage, we should be informed and kept in the loop at all times,” he said.Cllr Rob Caffel explained that he had spoken to Andy Mason, MCC’s anti-social behaviour project officer about the vandalism and a number of break-ins around Drybridge Street. Mr Mason said the police have an ongoing investigation into that incident (Beacon front page 4th September) but added that the police have a bigger priority in another part of town at this moment which they cannot discuss.“There is something going on and all cameras are being used for that,” he added.Anthea Dewhurst added that there are a lot of incidents happening at the new Monnow Bridge “and the camera is really close by there”.She explained shopping trolleys are being thrown off the bridge within sight of the camera.Councillor Mat Feakins said that “perhaps we should not be spending £14k on this system but £24k on an all-singing and all-dancing system.”The town clerk, Dee Lovering said she had recently met with the CSOs to discuss a number of things and suggested they should be invited to the next meeting to bring councillors up to date with some of the crime and anti-social behaviour in town.