‘Big Brother’ is watching you - but at a price

One of the CCTV cameras in Horncastle, soon to be useless despite the cost EMN-150323-115526001
One of the CCTV cameras in Horncastle, soon to be useless despite the cost EMN-150323-115526001

Councils throughout East Lindsey could be left thousands of pounds out of pocket because of controversial changes to a CCTV scheme.

Seven Town Councils - including Horncastle - pay an annual fee for CCTV coverage operated by East Lindsey District Council.

Horncastle Town Council pays £10,000 a year.

The council has 11 cameras - some covering the town centre and others the Boston Road Industrial Estate.

Fifty per cent of the annual fee goes towards a maintenance contract, which includes a £500 contribution to an operation room based in Skegness.

The remaining 50 per cent goes to replace some of the cameras every year because they have to be upgraded as part of the maintenance contract.

Now, though, ELDC is planning to shut its operation room - apparently as a cost cutting measure - and move the entire system to Boston.

However, the switch will mean the 11 cameras in Horncastle will have to be replaced.

According to the Town Council, they will not have to pay for the new cameras but they will have to pay an annual maintenance charge.

It’s understood that in all, 97 cameras at the seven towns across East Lindsey could be affected.

Councillors in Horncastle have criticised the plan but say they appear to have “no alternative’ than agree to the new scheme.

They raised concerns that the new cameras will be ‘wireless’ and might not even work in Horncastle .

Coun Maurice Lamb suggested selling the outdated cameras on E-Bay.