Knife arches to be installed across Sheffield schools following violent gang clashes

Security arches - which can detect if someone is carrying a knife or gun - are set to be installed at schools across Sheffield as part of a crackdown on gang violence.

By The Newsroom
Wednesday, 12th July 2017, 11:10 am
Updated Thursday, 31st August 2017, 2:24 pm
Footage of the clash between rival gangs in Spital Hill.
Footage of the clash between rival gangs in Spital Hill.

The 'knife arches' - metal detectors often seen at airports and which are commonplace in many American high schools - have already been temporarily sited at Parkwood E-ACT Academy in Shirecliffe.

The move was part of a police operation to crackdown on knife crime after a man was shot and another stabbed during clashes between rival Somalian and Kurdish gangs in nearby Spital Hill, Burngreave.

The knife arches at Parkwood Academy.

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The security arches are now set to be installed temporarily at other schools across Sheffield in the coming months as part of a crackdown after recent figures showed knife crime involving 14 to 24-year-olds rose by 28 per cent in the city over the last year.

This is almost double the national average of 15 per cent.

Sergeant Lee Kayne, of the Burngreave problem solving team, said: “As part of our work in relation to tackling knife crime, we’ve begun working with some schools in the area, providing students with information and educating them about the dangers of carrying knives.

“This work has also included giving advice to teachers and placing knife arches at some entrances. Over the coming months we will look to widen this work to include all schools in the area."

The knife arches at Parkwood Academy.

A South Yorkshire Police spokeswoman said further visits, which include the temporary siting of knife arches, "will be repeated in other schools across Sheffield following the school holidays."

There were no knives or guns found during the two days the arches were sited at Parkwood. It is understood the arches will be placed for a couple of days at a time at other schools as part of the programme.

Amnesty bins for knives had previously been temporarily installed in the school. No illegal or dangerous items were handed into them.

Headteacher Victoria Simcock stressed that knife crime was not a problem at the school but it was of the 'utmost importance’ to educate youngsters on its dangers.

About 30 Kurdish and Somalian men clashes in Spital Hill on Wednesday, June 21, at 3pm. A 33-year-old man was taken to hospital with gunshot wounds and a 17-year-old boy was stabbed.