A "scheme" is the modern term for a "Watch". A Neighbourhood Watch scheme can be set up in a street, group of streets, a block of flats, across a village, for a community such as a church, in a rural area or in partnership with a Residents Association - there are no hard and fast rules on what a scheme is and what it includes. What works best for you will be fine with us, but we suggest that you try to keep it local and engage with neighbours and other local residents. It's a good way of meeting people and making new friends!
What is a Watch (Scheme)?
There are no rules about what makes up a Watch. It is a self-help community that can be mapped to: a street or streets, a small village or housing development, a church group, a self-interest group, a Housing Association, or a social media group. Examples of successful Watches include:
- A street of 50 or so residents with one coordinator and a deputy who can take over when the lead coordinator is indisposed.
- A housing association that already exists to improve the lives of a group of residents in a village or housing development.
- A small close of 10 houses who owners generally already know each other but wish their road and houses to be well monitored.
- A church community with no physical boundaries
- A Facebook group for a town, village or community.
You can easily check if there is an existing Neighbourhood Watch scheme nearby by entering your postcode in the box in the "Join us" page. Most Watches are mapped around a physical boundary, but there may be an existing Watch whose description covers a wider community and would be suitable for you to join.
A Neighbourhood Watch scheme requires a person we call a co-ordinator - they are just a local point of contact. Their main role is to encourage local people to join the scheme, and then to forward key messages to the scheme members. A Minimum requirement to register in the InTheKnow system is an email address and that address is used by trusted agencies such as Neighbourhood Watch and the local police, amongst others to send messages. Increasingly, residents can also receive messages direct, by signing themselves onto our system but who are not part of any Scheme. These people are called "Residents" on the system (as against "Coordinators").
Additional information for residents who are using our system
Our system is very secure and the same software is also used by many police forces. Your data is held securely and in accordance with Data Protection legislation.
If you choose to register your details with us then YOU will be in control of who can send you information (“Information providers”), what sort of messages you would like to receive, and even which local areas you would like to receive messages about. When you register with us you can choose or will be sent a user name and password, and you can change your password whenever you wish.
If you wish to join a Scheme already set up please use the “Find your local scheme” at the top of the front page and follow instructions. You can send the Scheme coordinator a message and request to join.