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Bobbies to go on the buses to hear concerns of passengers in Durham area
BOBBIES are going on the buses in the latest move to gather feedback from the public on crime and policing issues.
Bus passengers travelling from Durham to surrounding suburbs and villages can expect to see a uniformed police officer getting on board to join them on their journey over the next few weeks.
Members of Durham City neighbourhood policing team will travel on regular service routes to Bearpark, Bowburn, Brandon, Ushaw Moor and other nearby communities holding impromptu feedback sessions with passengers to discover their fears and concerns.
The initiative will also be extended to take in Durham’s Park and Ride system.
Regular constables and police community support officers (PCSOs) will travel on shuttle buses linking the city centre and the three outlying car parks on the network, at Carrville, Sniperley and Howlands, to hear issues raised by commuters and shoppers heading into and out of Durham.
Inspector Paul Anderson, who heads the city’s neighbourhood policing team, said the concept emerged from some of the regular Police and Communities Together (PACT) meetings held in the area.
“The idea is that officers and PCSOs will spend the bus journey chatting to people to find out if they have any concerns in their community which they wish to draw to our attention.
“On arriving at their destination the officer or PCSO will then take the opportunity to begin to address the issues of concern.
“We are hoping this will be a welcome addition to the ways in which people can engage with us as part of the PACT (Police and Communities Together) process.
“It’s something which came out of our PACT meetings with the feeling that the officer on board will have a captive audience of passengers.
“You could almost call it ‘PACT and Ride’.
“It’s not a case of protecting passengers on buses, it’s simply taking the opportunity to engage with the travelling public.”
Insp Anderson said the scheme is taking place with the blessing of the Arriva bus company which serves many outlying villages in the Durham area, as well as having the contract to operate the Park and Ride shuttle service.
The Durham Police Facebook page or Twitter account, @DurhamPolice, both carry further information on the scheme.