POLICE have moved to reassure residents in an East Staffordshire village that changes to the way it operates in the area will not have an impact on crime levels.
Staffordshire Police moved to allay the concerns of residents in Barton under Needwood after it was revealed that the PCSO which covers the village was set to take on extra responsibilities, which include covering other villages including Tatenhill and Rangemore, Anslow, Tutbury and Abbots Bromley.
Changes have also required village PCSO Steve Smith to report to Burton Police Station for his shift at 8am which means there is no police presence in the village during the morning rush hour.
Policing for the village is the responsibility of the Burton Division’s Neighbourhood Policing Team and Barton Parish Council fears that further changes will mean that cover will be spread so thinly that the lack of police uniforms on the ground will encourage an increase in crime.
Chief Inspector Steve Maskrey, commander of East Staffordshire Local Policing Team (LPT), said: “We are committed to having a visible presence in Barton and want to understand the issues that are affecting local people. We can then work with them, and appropriate partner agencies, to resolve such issues.
“For example we are currently looking at officer briefing times to ensure we are maximising the time that officers have on patrol in the community at key times of the day.
“We are always looking at ways to further improve the service we deliver and would encourage residents to get involved in this.”
Barton is staffed by PCSO Steve Smith, PCSO Sarah Hunt and PC Rich Boulter and supported by PCs Rich Baker, Pete Harrison, Stuart Moon, Rich Barnhouse and Ben Green.