Officer praises police’s efforts after drop seen in crimes at Bestival

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AN AVERAGE of just over two crimes an hour were reported at this year’s Bestival – but police said offences were down from last year.

Figures from Hampshire police show 248 crimes were recorded at the four-day event at Robin Hill Country Park on the Isle of Wight last weekend.

Of those 110 were thefts from tents – down 23 per cent from last year.

Overall crime was down 12 per cent from last year.

A total of 62 drugs offences were recorded at this year’s festival and 116 drugs-related stop checks were carried out.

Just over £20,000 worth of drugs were seized over the weekend and £25,000 worth of drugs were given up by festival attendees in amnesty bins at the entrances.

Chief Supt Scott Chilton, police commander for the festival, said: ‘The work of officers involved in the policing operation is evident in these very positive crime figures. With the event organisers and Isle of Wight Council, we ensured the safety of around 47,000 members of the public onsite.

‘While these figures may change in the days following the festival as more reports are made to us, they provide an indication that our proactive approach alongside our partners and event organisers to tackling issues such as drug possession and theft has really paid off this year.’

Hampshire Constabulary worked with Isle of Wight Council, Island Roads and Bestival’s traffic management organisers to tackle traffic congestion on roads near the site. The force said a traffic management plan ‘minimised significant disruption’.