As the voice of the public in policing, a record number of town and parish councils have had their say on policing through the Police and Crime Commissioner’s bespoke survey. 182 councils in total, an increase of 30% from last year, submitted their views on West Mercia Police.
73% of respondents believe West Mercia Police is doing a fair, good or excellent job but 58% perceive police visibility to be poor or very poor in their area. This is a slight increase from last year’s results (52%).
Other results from respondents included:
- 79% state the police have been in contact to identify priorities.
- A 50:50 response was shown when respondents followed up with whether their priorities were being acted upon.
- Over a quarter state they agree or strongly agree that the police work well with councils.
- Rural crime (52%) and road safety (78%) were the two highest ranking problems perceived by councils.
- 67% of councils believe anti-social behaviour is not a big issue in their local area, falling similarly with last year’s results.
PCC John Campion said: “As PCC, my pledge is clear to ensure everyone from all corners of our communities has a voice, and it’s heard at the highest level in policing. This survey allows me to understand the concerns of communities across West Mercia, and I will ensure they are acted upon.
“It’s welcome that the majority of councils believe West Mercia Police is doing a good job, and the force has been in contact with them about local concerns. However, it is concerning to see that some don’t believe the visibility of officers is what they or I expect.
“I share that same ambition to increase visibility and accessibility of officers and I will continue to use my powers to support and challenge the Chief Constable to ensure communities feel the benefit of the record number of police officers I have invested in across West Mercia.”
Temporary Assistant Chief Constable Grant Wills said: “We welcome the results of the town and parish council survey. Our Local Policing Charter outlines our ongoing commitment to improve our local policing delivery and the results of the survey are invaluable to this.
“The charter has seen our safer neighbourhood teams work even more closely with town and parish councils across Herefordshire, Shropshire and Worcestershire and it’s encouraging the majority think we are doing a fair, good or excellent job. The geographical area covered by the force is vast with some incredibly remote areas which brings challenges, however, we are striving to ensure we improve our visibility right across our three counties.”
Please see below for the results from each Local Policing Area.
You can read the 2023 Town and Parish Council Survey in full here.