SALISBURY'S ageing CCTV network will be replaced by a new, modern system at a cost of £500,000.

Wiltshire Council will pay for the new system to cover Amesbury, Wilton and Salisbury, but will stop funding the running costs in a bid to save around £160,000 a year, the Journal understands.

The news sparked fears of a big "switch-off" that would leave the city's streets vulnerable to criminals.

But today the council said there would be no disruption to service and confirmed the streets would still be monitored around the clock at all times.

It is not clear who will run the new system, but talks between the police, Wiltshire Council, Salisbury City Council, Salisbury Business Improvement District (BID) are ongoing, with a meeting to be held on Monday.

Inspector David Minty said: "The important thing from a policing perspective is having a good, modern system that allows me to prevent and detect crime and disorder."

The current system uses a network of fibre-optic cables that cost £75,000 a year to rent.

It is understood the new system will use wireless technology, making it cheaper to run.

BID business manager Steve Godwin said: "We are a very safe city and fortunate to be having our very old CCTV system completely updated."

The council is yet to release any firm details about the plans but an update is expected early next week.