Why you ought to smile dozens of times a day...

WE may not know it, but each of us is captured by CCTV cameras dozens of times every day.

Calderdale alone has more than 60 cameras across the district.

And police say the CCTV systems are proving a success in leaving criminals with nowhere to hide.

Not only are the cameras a deterrent, they say, but their footage can be key to finding suspects and bringing them to justice.

Often pictures from the cameras are published in the Courier as part of appeals for help tracking down people officers want to talk to about incidents.

They also boost safety in the district.

PC John Palfreyman, CCTV liaison officer for Calderdale Police, said: “The cameras have found people unconscious in the road and got police and paramedics to them.

“Without a doubt they have saved people’s lives.”

He said the cameras had helped to find missing and vulnerable people, and were also often used to help catch criminals travelling from other areas to commit crime in Calderdale. The cameras on the streets of Calderdale are monitored at a hi-tech centre which opened in 2008.

The current divisional commander for Calderdale, Chief Superintendent Chris Hardern, recognises their value, and was responsible for securing funding for CCTV to be installed at Dean Clough in Halifax when he was Calderdale’s chief inspector for community safety 10 years ago.

Last year, pictures and film caught on CCTV led to more than 200 arrests in Calderdale.

Just one of the events when they have proved an important policing tool was at an English Defence League protest in Halifax town centre on April 16 last year.

Detective Sergeant Phil Jagger, from Calderdale CID, said: “It would be true to say that the help the police received from the town centre CCTV operatives was invaluable.

“They were able to capture offences taking place and track offenders as they passed through the town centre and assist in their apprehension.

“The footage obtained on the day was used to identify suspects and followup inquiries enabled key footage to be preserved.

“This has all been used in evidence.”