A police officer is settling into his new surroundings for a new six-month project to work more closely with the council and improve the services provided by both.
Wellingborough Council and Northamptonshire Police have teamed up to find ways to improve services to the public, with Sergeant Paul Valentine leading the project.
He only started his new role on June 1, but has already settled in well and said he has been given a warm welcome at Swanspool House.
The project is an extension of the Wellingborough Community Safety Partnership (CSP), which involves a number of organisations working together to identify and deal with crime, anti-social behaviour and issues of public concern in the borough.
Sgt Valentine said: “I’m looking forward to working with partners and voluntary groups to find improved ways of working to reduce violence, drugs and anti-social behaviour across Wellingborough.
“I am working with the CSP for Wellingborough, which is already strong, so it is a fantastic footing to start off with.”
This is the first in the county and we are testing new groundSupt Andy Cox
Organisations he will be working with will include Wellingborough Homes and Wellingborough Norse.
Sgt Valentine said the areas he would be focusing on would include drugs, anti-social behaviour, serious acquisitive crime and working with the younger generation to try and steer them away from crime.
While drugs and related crimes are not a major problem in the borough, Sgt Valentine said they were keen for it to stay that way, especially following two major police operations which saw 30 dealers taken off the streets of Wellingborough and East Northants recently.
He added: “My job is a lot of talking and then hopefully something positive will come from it.”
He will produce a report of his recommendations at the end of the secondment.
Wellingborough Council leader Paul Bell is fully behind the initiative and said: “I am over the moon about this.
“I know Paul from when he first came to Wellingborough and we hit it off.
“The ideas he is looking at are what I am looking for too.
“This is partnership working and we are committed to supporting the police and their initiatives.
“I am really proud that Wellingborough has been chosen for this.”
Superintendent Andy Cox, from Northamptonshire Police, said Sgt Valentine had been hand-picked for the role, with his strengths including recently being inspector for Wellingborough, experience of working in the community and his ‘fresh thinking’.
He said: “This is the first in the county and we are testing new ground.”
If the six-month trial is successful, Supt Cox said he would like to see more resources put into it and for it to be rolled out elsewhere in the county.
He added: “This is a stepping stone to where I would like to get to.”