12. Safety, Security and Resilience

Crime and Quality of Life Incidents
The Cults, Bieldside and Milltimber (CBM) suburbs are relatively safe and secure areas of the city. Monthly reviews of Crimes and Quality of Life Incidents usually show less than five instances in each category and serious crime is exceptional. Unfortunately, Grampian Police do not publish trend statistics on a local basis. For early warnings of potential increase of specific criminal activities, the community has to rely on advice of local police officers in their meetings and through media communication.

The CBM area is policed by the Hazlehead Community Policing Team based in the Hazlehead Police Station. Local officers operate from the Cults Police Office in the Cults Academy building which is manned 24/7.

City Wardens patrol the area regularly but not frequently – averaging about once per three days – to spot parking and other quality of life offences, but due to the extensive and widely built-up area to be covered they are not frequently seen. The effectiveness of their patrolling activity is limited by formal enforcement restrictions.

Very few Neighbourhood Watch Schemes are operated in the CBM area. These schemes offer protection against opportunistic crime and unwanted cold callers and also may promote good contacts between neighbours.

Specific attention is drawn to the following common crimes in the area:
1. Car or motor cycle theft by house breaking or entering unsecured premises to find the keys. The stolen vehicles are usually recovered elsewhere in Aberdeen after being used for joy riding.
2. Theft from motor vehicles.
3. Housebreaking and forced entry into garages and sheds.
4. Speeding and inconsiderate driving.

Common quality of life incidents are:
1. Use of motorcycles on forest footpaths and the Old Deeside Railway Line path
2. Rogue parking on double yellow lines and outside schools
3. Antisocial youth behaviour and vandalism

Emergencies and Natural Disasters
Emergencies could come in many forms but the majority are caused by:
• Severe weather (snow, ice, heavy rain, high winds)
• Flooding (River Dee in spate, feeder burns or gullies overflowing, standing water)
• Fires (domestic, residential homes, industrial or forest)
• Major transport incidents (accidents, chemical spills, fires)
• Lengthy loss of utilities (gas, water, electricity)
• Disease control (human, animal-quarantine)

The main risk in the CBM area is related to flooding caused by the river Dee or due to excessive rainfall on the hillsides. Storm Frank caused considerable problems in 2015 when low areas along the river were flooded and a number of houses had to be evacuated. The Deeside golf course was also flooded and out of use for several months as the floodwaters had deposited large amounts of silt from the upstream building site of the new bridge for the Aberdeen Western Peripheral Route.

Recent excessive rain has caused flooding in Friarsfield and Cults village due to gullies not coping and the Cults burn overflowing.

Covid 19 Pandemic
Since early 2020 the Community Council is leading a CBM Coronavirus Help Group providing volunteer support for residents requiring support during the lock-down periods. Some 150 volunteers registered initially and this proved an ample number to cope with all support requests including some from neighbouring communities. The Help Group is still active.

Resilience Plan and Team
There is a CBM Resilience Plan in place to organise first help at emergencies and natural disasters before the official front-line emergency services are activated and complimenting these. A volunteer CBM Resilience Team has been established and potential refuge centres have been set up. Regular on-line availability exercises are being held to check team and centre preparedness.

Key Issues
1. The housing developments on upstream fields with the associated loss of soaking areas need to be accompanied by adequate surface water management specifically recognising that climate change seems to cause regular monsoon type downpours.
2. Many drains in the area are blocked potentially causing local flooding problems.
3. The traffic situation in the area has changed materially after completion of the AWPR and is still affected by road realignments in the new township of Countesswells. This may affect road safety. Special attention will be required for the safe operation of the traffic light junctions on the North Deeside Road, specifically that with Kirk Brae in Cults.
4. Alerting residents on an emergency situation that may affect them is an issue that will need attention.
5. Due to the limited number and frequent change of officers the activity of police and city wardens in the area – although reasonably effective – is not very visible. This will also be owing to the low local crime rate but it may make residents feel insecure and not knowing what to do if they are affected by crime. Information on criminal activity is also rather haphazard.

Community Council Objectives
To pay special attention to surface water management issues in all applications for new housing developments
To continue discussion with the Police to receive a more systematic flow of information on security matters thus allowing trends to be monitored and seen by all.
To further extend/train the volunteer Resilience Team and to improve the emergency alerting process.
To monitor the future traffic situation (especially regarding speeding motor cycles) and call for corrective action if needed.


  1. Are there any security issues that would require special attention of the Police or Wardens?
  2. Are there any flooding issues that would require special attention of the city services?
  3. Are there any traffic safety issues that have not been addressed to date?
  4. Would you volunteer to be involved either personally or by providing equipment/facilities in the Resilience Plan effort for the CBM area?


If you would like to comment please add them below or click here to open a response sheet file.   This will allow you to complete and send your response by email to cbmcc@cbmcommunity.org.uk or by post to CBMCC at:  188 North Deeside Road, Milltimber, AB13 0HL.  All comments,  however received,  will be collated anonymously and acted upon as appropriate.  Your identity will not be disclosed.

Thank You

Leave a comment