Increase in police numbers in Hartlepool as force focuses on neighbourhoods
Hartlepool has seen an increase in police officers in the town in recent months as part of work to return to a more neighbourhood model, according to force chiefs.
It came as the Safer Hartlepool Partnership was given an update this week on previously agreed plans to return to neighbourhood policing in Hartlepool, with more officers on the streets.
Mark Haworth, Hartlepool Neighbourhood Policing Team chief inspector, said positive steps have been taken in the town and across Cleveland towards this to date, with more still to be done.
Speaking at the meeting, he said: “With our new Police and Crime Commissioner, we’ve really seen quite a fast journey to neighbourhood policing.
“That’s still been built to get us where we need to be. In the last six months, certainly from a Hartlepool point of view, we have seen an increase in PCs, sergeants and also one PCSO that’s new to us.
“The increased work and community safety work that goes on is second to none, it’s essential.
“It’s a journey, but it’s certainly an improved journey compared to where it was 12 months ago.”
Work to date has involved educating new neighbourhood police officers around “problem solving”, to help crackdown on issues arising, as well as protecting those most vulnerable to harm.
Steps have also been taken to use different technology such as drones to help tackle such issues.
Chief Inspector Haworth said: “Hartlepool have 15 problems at this moment in time, or problem solving plans in place, that goes from open spaces through to individuals that have got some real complex needs to support them.
“We’ve seen an increase with our community safety partnerships, the officers have been drone trained, we’ve now seen drones being deployed within Hartlepool to assist with open spaces, fires and antisocial behaviour.”
Work has also been taking place with initiatives such as Operation Endeavour, aimed at disrupting and dismantling organised crime groups, while programmes have also been set up to help address antisocial behaviour.
Police chiefs also stressed the importance of communication, with newsletters going out to communities and surveys being used to receive feedback from residents.
Officers also stressed the importance of partnership working between different organisations in the town, and praised the initiatives carried out in this way to date.