Nottinghamshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner Paddy Tipping has welcomed a new National Rural Crime Network which has been set-up to help tackle rural crime more effectively in England and Wales.
Already endorsed by 18 of the UK’s Police and Crime Commissioners and with a further eight Commissioners considering joining the group, this would bring the total support to around two thirds of PCCs across the two countries.
The Commissioner said that rural crime featured in his priorities, adding: “This fits well with my focus on tackling rural crime, including the launch of a rural alert system providing timely crime information to farmers and landowners and the introduction of rural special constables.
“I heard about this national initiative last year and was keen to get involved as I am confident that by working with others, learning others’ successes as well as our own we will effectively address the type of problems which impact on rural communities.”
The Commissioners convened with police officers and representatives from the Rural Services Network, Farmers Weekly Magazine, National Community Safety Network, the online crime reporting system ‘Facewatch’, the Country Land and Business Association and other rural stakeholders, to explore the concept in more detail.
Nick Payne, rural services network officer, said: “There is good collaborative work already occurring in some localities but it is widely acknowledged that sharing of best practice is patchy and urgently needs to be improved. The Network will ensure that this is effectively coordinated and sustained.”
It will also be developing strong links to academic research resources as well promoting successful techniques to encourage rural communities to become more self -resilient in these difficult times.
Once established the Network will provide an online resource for police, community safety practitioners and others to interact, to share information, training development, access to case studies and link up with other mechanisms for reporting crime and/or suspicious behaviour.
A smaller working group will now refine some initial Terms of Reference and explore ways in which the ICT infrastructure that will be required for the Network to function can be funded and most efficiently established.