CCTV cameras across the Chiltern district are set to be replaced after politicians raised concerns that plans to remove some could encourage crime in the area.

In October last year Chiltern District Council (CDC) announced that 12 cameras could be removed in the district, including three in Lowndes Park, Chesham, after an investigation found they were used less frequently to detect crime than others.

The council also unveiled plans to replace the remaining CCTV with digital cameras to produce “high quality images” –  which can be used by police for investigations and as evidence in court.

However, after councillors raised concerns some of the cameras set to be removed could be preventing crime, CDC’s cabinet agreed this week to spend £210,000 on replacing all CCTV across Amersham, Chesham, Chalfont St Peter and Little Chalfont with digital cameras.

A total of £80,000 is also going to be spent on installing mobile CCTV in crime “hotspots”.

A review was carried out by CDC’s healthy communities policy advisory group (PAG) which established the CCTV “deterred crime and disorder” in the locations where it was set to be scrapped.

Thames Valley Police also informed members exactly what officers use CCTV for – including tracking criminals and witnesses involved in major crimes.

A report presented to CDC’s cabinet stated: “Members were informed that, in addition to investigating crimes which had taken place, CCTV footage was also used to track the movements of offenders and witnesses involved in major crimes.

“CCTV was also used when looking for missing persons, which may include elderly vulnerable residents suffering from dementia.

“It was therefore advantageous to have cameras located at car parks and major junctions in order to track vehicle movements.”

CDC’s CCTV control room is currently based in Wycombe – however the monitoring of cameras is set to move more than 35 miles away to Milton Keynes.