A FORMER MSP has backed calls for more CCTV cameras in Helensburgh after highlighting the need for better security on streets in the wake of the horrific murder of Sarah Everard.

Ms Everard, 33, was kidnapped, raped and murdered by a serving Met Police officer in south London in March, crimes for which her killer was sentenced to a whole-life prison term.

Ex Conservative MSP for West Scotland, Maurice Corry - who lives in Helensburgh - referenced the shocking case during a discussion at a virtual meeting of Helensburgh Community Council (HCC) on September 30.

HCC member Tariq Durrani told the meeting that a member of the public had suggested to him that more observation cameras be placed in and around the town centre following an incident in Colquhoun Square on August 31.

As the Advertiser reported, a 17-year-old male was charged by police for allegedly vandalising a bench and a defibrillator in the square, causing around £800 worth of damage to the emergency equipment.

After hearing that the current surveillance cameras in the area are not permanently manned, Mr Corry, who became a co-opted member of HCC last month following a five-year spell as an MSP, said: “I think it’s very important that we get real-time cameras. It’s terrible to think they do this on a recorded basis, particularly when we bear in mind the appalling case in the Old Bailey and the sentencing of that police officer.

READ MORE: Anger at 'senseless' damage to defibrillator in Helensburgh town centre

“It sent shudders around the world and I think it would be very irresponsible for us as a community council not to take some cognisance of that.

“We need to get some better security in the town, particularly with young girls, girls generally.

“As a father of three daughters it appals me. We should be responsible and step up to the mark and put some pressure on the system, both local and national government and indeed the police to make sure we keep our place as safe as possible.”

Meanwhile, another Helensburgh resident has also called for action after his car was damaged by a group of youths allegedly throwing glass bottles at passing vehicles on Friday night, October 1.

John Ritchie told the Advertiser that a glass bottle struck his car as he was driving up Sinclair Street at around 8pm, having stopped at the Victoria Halls traffic lights.

Mr Ritchie said: “There were a bunch of teenagers I saw throwing them at any vehicles going by from the entrance to Hermitage Park at the top side of the Victoria Halls.

READ MORE: 'Politics is in my blood': Ex MSP from Helensburgh joins town's community co uncil

“I stopped just a bit further up Sinclair Street and so did a van that had obviously been hit as well. But it’s so dark at that entrance that I couldn’t see anyone and to be honest chasing 15 to 20 teenagers into a park on your own probably isn’t a sensible idea especially when they’ve been drinking.

“On further inspection of my car, which I’ve recently purchased, so it’s my pride and joy, there are dents and scratches on the roof right above the driver’s seat which I’ll now have to pay for to be fixed.

“I’m hoping something can be done maybe with more CCTV to stop this happening and to hopefully catch the ones that are doing this, as someone is going to get hurt never mind the criminal damage or possibly even the public will take things into their own hands and do something about it if the authorities won’t.”

Police confirmed that two vehicles were struck by bottles near to the Victoria Halls on Friday night, October 1 and enquiries are ongoing to try to trace a male youth in dark clothing.

Anyone with any information which may assist officers is asked to contact Helensburgh police office.