From Christopher Offer, Brading:

Is IT just me?

According to an item I watched on BBC South Today, Isle of Wight Council is to provide its parking officers with body-worn cameras. So far, fair enough.

Having myself worked in the front-line of law enforcement, I accept, of course, that officer safety is paramount. We were then informed that 20 cameras are to be purchased at a cost of £17,000 (that is to say cost borne by the council-tax payer, of course).

According to my dodgy maths that’s £850 each unit!

Apparently, officers have been attacked 60 times in the last two years which, of course, is appalling.

Cameras will undoubtedly act as a deterrent and help to gather evidence.

I am aware the Reveal RS2-X2 camera featured is a good piece of kit but. in these times of austerity (even if we are assured that they’re about to come to an end), is such high expenditure really justified when cameras can be purchased from about one tenth of that price?

If it is considered that only the RS2-X2 will do, with about four clicks of the mouse, I discovered I can buy one direct from the manufacturer for £449 plus VAT and ‘volume discounts are available’ according to their website. So, if I, a member of the public with no purchasing power, can buy a single camera for that price (presumably less if I buy 20 or more) who, may I ask, is trousering the £401+ difference per unit (or £8,020+ total)?

Answers please, Isle of Wight Council.