THE Home Secretary Theresa May MP visited Halesowen on the anniversary of Christina Edkins murder to discuss crime on buses.

Mrs May inspected a new initiative on Friday at Halesowen bus station to increase security on public transport and reduce town centre crime.

The Safer Travel Partnership works through cooperation between West Midlands Police, Centro, bus and train operators and British Transport Police to share information and coordinate efforts to tackle crime.

She met Halesowen and Rowley Regis MP James Morris, Safer Travel Partnership manager Mark Babington and Inspector Lee Gordon from the Safer Travel police team.

Mrs May said: “Knives can bring tragedy to people's lives, as everybody in Halesowen knows too well after the terrible death last year of Christina Edkins.

“James Morris has been campaigning hard to highlight the dangers of knife crime, and it was very helpful to meet with him and local police officers on my recent visit."

She added: “The Government, like the police themselves, are determined to do everything we can to get knives off our streets.”

Mr Babington added: "The Home Secretary was very interested to hear about the collaboration between the two services and Centro and how together with the operators we police 400 million journeys a year.

"Public transport enjoys a very low crime rate but the Safer Travel Partnership is committed to making it even safer and, importantly, making people feel safe."

The partnership has access to around 1,000 CCTV cameras located at bus, rail and Metro stations, Park and Ride sites, bus routes and bus shelters, which are monitored from a 24-hour control centre at Centro’s Birmingham headquarters.

Mr Morris MP said: “This is a great example of how, by working together, the Safer Travel Partnership is already making a real difference in our community.

“Not only do the police spot-checks help to make people feel safer on our bus and train routes, but the closer cooperation is helping the police to locate, identify and arrest people suspected of a range of crimes."