WOKING Street Angels, set up six years ago to be a calming influence in the town late at night, commissioned eight new volunteers at a church service on Sunday.
The independent charity, which has clocked up around 16,560 hours of night patrols, also recommissioned and gave thanks for its current 45 members.
The service was at St Nicholas’ Church, Pyrford, on Sunday, conducted by the Curate of Wisley and Pyrford, the Rev Charlie Lamont.
The congregation included Surrey Police and Crime Commissioner David Munro, Woking Mayor Anne Murray and her consort Michael Smith, and Woking Borough Council Deputy Chief Executive Douglas Spinks.
Surrey Police say violent crime in Woking town centre during the hours of late-night drinking has reduced by 64% since the Street Angels started their patrols between 10pm and 4am.
Charity trustee Laura Croker said members worked mainly with people suffering from the effects of drink who needed help. These included those who had become split up from their friends and visitors to the town who did not know the area.
“We work closely with the police, the CCTV operators, door guards, street marshals and taxi marshals to help keep people in distress safe,” she told the News & Mail.
“The Street Angels look out for signs of disturbances developing and try to diffuse problems but without putting themselves in harm’s way.”
Woking Streets are always looking for recruits, aged over 18, who are given comprehensive training for the role. To ensure their safety on the streets, they always work in teams of two or three with mandatory rest periods through the night.
Patrols are on Friday and Saturdays, with extra duties added on special occasions such as New Year’s Eve and A-level results night. Members typically do one duty a month with extra
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