Hampshire county council signs up to countryside crime plan

A cash machine was stolen from Central Convenience Stores in Swanmore last night

Thieves smash their way into shop and steal cash machine

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THE county council has pledged its support to Hampshire Constabulary’s Country Watch scheme to tackle rural crime.

The partnership will see countryside service staff receive training from the police’s Country Watch team on signs of rural crime to look out for, to help gather intelligence and report incidents.

Around 20 countryside service vehicles will also be badged with the Country Watch logo to give rural policing a more visible presence.

Councillor Andrew Gibson, executive member for culture, recreation and countryside for Hampshire county council, said: ‘Hampshire is a predominantly rural county and supporting rural communities is a priority for the county council.

Michael Lane, police and crime commissioner for Hampshire and Isle of Wight, said: ‘A key pillar of my police and crime plan is partnership.

‘I am delighted to support this partnership of Hampshire County Council and Country Watch as we work more effectively and efficiently to keep us all safer.’