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Policing - the pendulum swings again

March 9, 2020 7:55 PM
By Wiltshire Police
Originally published by Trevor Carbin Liberal Democrat

Recent changes to policing in Wiltshire have involved a movement away from 'community policing' as government cuts bit into the force's ability to work effectively at the local level.

The police have now made some changes which include:

  • Introduction of new policing teams in Warminster and Royal Wootton Bassett
  • Changing the names of community policing teams to reflect the towns from which they parade so their patch is easier for the public to understand
  • Reintroducing dedicated teams to focus on neighbourhood policing. These teams are made up of officers and PCSOs

The CPT Neighbourhood Teams are responsible for proactive policing, community engagement and working with partners to solve community problems.

The CPT Response Teams will be directly responding to crimes and incidents.

Police and Crime Commissioner for Wiltshire and Swindon Angus Macpherson said: "The first principle of policing is to prevent crime, and you can only do that by knowing your community.

"In recent years the Force has become too reactive, and these changes mean that more focus will be placed on proactive policing and preventing crime.

"The uplift of 49 police officers coming into Wiltshire will offer support and additional capacity to CPTs as the improvements embed.

"I was also delighted to be supported by the public to make a small increase of Β£10 per year, for an average household, in this year's policing precept. This money will be directly invested to support our Community Policing Teams."

The re-introduction of CPT Neighbourhood teams will be the most visible improvement in the model, with each CPT led by a Neighbourhood Inspector, and each team led by a sergeant.

Chief Constable Kier Pritchard said: "I truly believe these changes will mean our communities will be getting the very best out of my officers, staff and volunteers.

"The additional officers and staff promised by the Commissioner as part of the precept increase in 2019 and those from the Government mean that we now have the opportunity to look at how we can prevent crime happening in the first place and better work alongside the communities we serve.

"It won't be an overnight fix and there is still work to do, but I'm hopeful of even more officers being announced for Wiltshire in the next tranche of the national recruitment campaign enabling us to ensure that we continue to keep Wiltshire a safe county."

You can find out more about your community policing team by visiting the 'your area' pages on the Wiltshire Police website https://www.wiltshire.police.uk/YourArea