Faith in Northamptonshire Police grows

PEOPLE say they have more faith in Northamptonshire Police, but public confidence in the county’s force is still the lowest in the region.

The latest figures from the nationwide Crime Survey show that just over half – 58 per cent – of people in the county agree that police deal with local concerns.

But this represents an increase of 7.4 per cent more people in the past two years who believe that the police deal with concerns.

The force says it takes part in several events which give people a chance to chat with officers.

A police spokesman said: “The 58 per cent of people who agree the police deal with local concerns is a significant improvement of 7.4 per cent over the past two years, which exceeds the national change in this measure by two per cent.

“We are committed to listening to public concerns and acting with partners and communities to resolve local crime and disorder. We use methods to listen to our communities and identify their local concerns.

“Examples include PCSO deployment outside schools, local monthly surgeries, and weeks of action where we focus on areas with high footfalls.

“We undertake public attitude surveys with county residents and the survey shows that 82.5 per cent of the people who participated agree that the local police deal with their local concerns.”

The survey quizzed almost 1,000 people in the county.

The average percentage of people in the East Midlands who agree police deal with concerns was 61 per cent, with Leicestershire the highest with 68 per cent.

Deputy chairman of Northamptonshire Police Authority Ben Smith said: “Being at the bottom in the region will hopefully give us the impetus to improve.

“The police authority will continue to endeavour to improve relations with the public.

“But in my opinion, I think people are quite supportive of the police bearing in mind the cuts the force has had to take.”

Trisha Lynch, Neighbourhood Watch co-ordinator for Wellington Street, Kettering, said: “It’s hard getting people to join up to Neighbourhood Watch because some people have no faith in the police. You don’t see as many police on the beat as years gone by. But the police are doing well, I think they aren’t being called out as much because there’s less crime.”