18/04/2018

Rural communities, we're listening to you!

Cleveland’s specialists in rural and wildlife crime want to hear what you think about policing in the areas where you live and work.

National rural crime survey logo

Cleveland’s Police and Crime Commissioner Barry Coppinger is encouraging people to take part in this year’s National Rural Crime Survey, launched this week.

The last survey in 2015 estimated the true cost of rural crime to communities is nationally around £800m a year.

Officers in Cleveland are already focussed on tackling key issues from poaching to theft of machinery and equipment as well as flytipping.

We’ve carried out successful partnership operations with neighbouring forces and organisations such as The Environment Agency and Angling Trust.

Mr Coppinger said: “As Chair of the Tees Rural Crime Forum, I regularly meet with people living in rural areas to understand their concerns. Over the past couple of years, we have built up a passionate group of people from various agencies and communities, who have assisted in putting various measures in place to protect the natural beauty of our rural areas.

“However, there is still work to be done – and this survey is another way for communities to continue those conversations and to be heard nationally.

“I’m committed to combating the crimes taking place in our countryside through the right resourcing and planning. The survey will help provide a clear picture of what has improved and what challenges remain.”

Paul Payne is Cleveland Police’s Rural and Wildlife Officer. He said: “We recognise that people in our rural communities have specific needs and concerns. We want to do as much as possible not only to make people safe but also to make them feel safe too, which is so important for those in isolated areas.

“That’s why we’re doing everything from engagement through the Tees Rural Crime Forum to our annual Rural Week of Action – where we’ll help people protect their belongings and share crime prevention advice.

“I always want to hear about what we’re doing right and where we can improve and the national survey will help us do that.”

Paul and his team have now launched a Twitter account @ClevelandRural to discuss rural crime. The National Rural Crime Survey is open now at www.nationalruralcrimenetwork.net