Calls for more bobbies on the beat

By Ian Dipple Friday 04 January 2013 Updated: 07/01 12:23

Latest News

Buy photos » Police jacket

CALLS have been made for police bosses to put more bobbies on the beat after research revealed officers from West Mercia are spending just over a tenth of their time on the streets.

According to the statistics, West Mercia Police had just 12.6 per cent of its officers and PCSOs ‘visible and available’ to the public at any one time.

That equates to 14 available for every £10m spent by the force - an average cost of £722,589.

The figures were released by the TaxPayers’ Alliance, using data from Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC).

Matthew Sinclair, chief executive of the TaxPayers Alliance, called on police chiefs to ensure they were cutting unnecessary red tape getting in the way of frontline policing.

“Many police forces can do more to use their resources efficiently and get more of their officers out on the frontline fighting crime,” he said.

“Of course the police have some important work to do that will sometimes legitimately stop them being available for visible policing, but the large differences between forces suggests some are giving taxpayers much better value for money.”

A West Mercia Police spokeswoman said officers were deployed based on need and the nature of their work, which meant not all officers would be visible to the public while on duty and many did not carry out traditional ‘bobbies on the beat’ roles, such as CID officers working on a murder investigation in an incident room.

“We recognise there is a popular view police visibility lowers crime levels, however day-to-day experience shows that crime falls for a wide variety of reasons and officer visibility is just one of the tactics available to help drive crime down.”

The force also pointed out crime had fallen.

West Mercia’s Police and Crime Commissioner Bill Longmore said: “As it is not entirely clear how these figures were calculated I would not want to comment on them specifically at this stage."

“However, I would reassure residents of West Mercia that ensuring the force has as visible a policing presence as possible across the three counties is something I see as a priority.”

Popular »

1 College opens new student bureau

2 Jobs boost for famous sauce factory

3 Giles one step closer to X Factor dream

4 Young musician to light up coffee concert

5 Giles Potter misses out on X Factor dream

More news »

Gritters hit the road as temperatures plummet

GRITTERS will be out across the county's roads

Norovirus forces suspension of routine operations

ROUTINE operations have been temporarily suspended at all

Flood clean-up springs into action

A MAJOR clean-up operation was in full swing

Update: Man charged with Adrian Locke murder

A MAN in his 20s has been charged

Regional news »


Stratford Observer
Dad of fallen paratrooper goes to Afghanistan in memory

THE FATHER of fallen paratrooper Conrad Lewis has made an ...

Bromsgrove Standard
Alton Towers Halloween spectacular

VISITING your favourite theme park always guarantees a day packed ...

Redditch Standard
Spooktacular twist for thrill-seekers

VISITING your favourite theme park always guarantees a day packed ...

Evesham Observer
Knives in car lead to unpaid work

A FATHER-of-two who hid a kitchen knife under his car ...