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Fly tipping, illegal metal detecting, online scamming and speeding were just a few of the topics raised at a special meeting hosted by Norfolk’s Police and Crime Commissioner yesterday evening.
The ‘Barnstorming’ event was attended by more than 50 local residents and members of the farming community who were given the chance to question PCC Lorne Green and a panel of experts about all aspects of rural crime.
The Commissioner also gave an update on his Rural Policing Strategy – launched in autumn 2016 – and discussed what Norfolk Constabulary is continuing to do to address local concerns.
Speaking at the Snettisham event Mr Green, said: “I hope that tonight’s event will give you the opportunity to learn more about what I have been doing over the last twelve months, in partnership with Norfolk Constabulary, to tackle the issues that are affecting you and your communities.
“A year ago I was campaigning to be PCC for Norfolk and in that campaign I pledged to support rural communities by listening to and responding to the needs of people in the countryside.
“Once elected to office I immediately set about fulfilling this pledge by joining the National Rural Crime Network, holding engagement events and commissioning Norfolk Constabulary to develop a new Rural Policing Strategy to respond even more effectively to crimes that are unique to and take place in rural communities.”
Mr Green told the meeting that when he was elected a year ago, Norfolk had six officers devoted to rural crime – since then the county’s force has increased that number to 23.
The Barnstorming event, held at Snettisham Park Visitor Centre, is one of a number of initiatives Mr Green has introduced during his first year as PCC to tackle rural crime.
In autumn 2016 the PCC hosted a Rural Crime Summit where, alongside PCCs for Suffolk, Cambridgeshire and Lincolnshire, he signed a Rural Crime Concordat pledging to work across county borders to tackle the crime issues affecting rural communities.
‘Supporting Rural Communities’ is also a key priority in the PCC’s recently published Police and Crime Plan.
Mr Green added: “People in Norfolk have told me about their crime and policing concerns and what they feel they need from the police to feel safer living or working in their local area.
“I have pledged to take up their concerns and drive forward Norfolk’s approach to tackling rural crime and this is the first of a cycle of meetings which will take place around the county over the next three years.”