Changing faces of Felixstowe policing

EXTRA police officers are to be deployed on the Felixstowe peninsula as part of new teams to tackle problems identified by the community, it was announced today.

EXTRA police officers are to be deployed on the Felixstowe peninsula as part of new teams to tackle problems identified by the community, it was announced today.

The project, called Safer Neighbourhood Teams, aims to get closer to the public and put more officers on the beat.

Felixstowe police commander Inspector Steve Gallant said the new teams would replace the current system of community police officers.

The Felixstowe sector will be split into three areas - north Felixstowe, south Felixstowe and the Colneis peninsula, which will stretch from the Trimley villages to the edge of Ipswich, - with each run by its own sergeant and manned by a mixture of police constables and community support officers.

Each team will have around four to five PCs, and three community support officers (CSOs), and two new premises were currently being sought while Felixstowe police station will be home to the third team.

Insp Gallant said there would be new sergeants and a few new police constables coming to Felixstowe, with a doubling of the number of CSOs to ten.

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However, most of the extra manpower needed for the project - set to start next spring - will come from changing the shift patterns among the current officers serving at Felixstowe.

The new teams will work closely with communities, holding r meetings to identify problems needing to be tackled and then working in partnership with various agencies to deal with them.

Insp Gallant said: “The aim will be to have regular community tasking meetings with the community to talk about the issues - each area will have its own meeting as the issues important to the Trimley villages will be different, for example, to those in Bucklesham.

“Many of the issues brought to us as police officers are often not strictly ones for the police to tackle or are matters where we need to work with other bodies, and the neighbourhood teams will mean that we can work together more.

“It is about community engagement - people getting together to solve problems - and about being accountable and everyone being accountable to everyone else.”

WEBLINK: www.suffolk.police.uk

What do you think of the changes? Do you expect it to be a better form of policing? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail EveningStarLetters@eveningstar.co.uk

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