It is one month since 37 officers from the Special Constabulary took up their new positions in Leighton Buzzard and Biggleswade, with almost 1,000 hours of patrols carried out as a consequence.
The Specials Tasking and Rural Crime Team (STaRC) has been split in two with 19 officers being based at Biggleswade and 17 in Leighton Buzzard while one Chief Inspector covers both areas.
The teams aims to provide an increased uniformed presence, while also offering the officers the chance to work in their own communities – a key reason why people volunteer for the service in the first place.
During the past month, Special Constables have dealt with a range of offences including street drinkers, anti-social behaviour, drug offences, drink driving, criminal damage, assaults and even closing down a rave.
The police also say that STaRC officers have also been involved in numerous warrants across Central Bedfordshire where they have provided much-needed assistance and community reassurance.
Special Constabulary Chief Officer, Wayne Humberstone, said: “There has always been a strong desire among Specials to put something back into the communities where they live and by positioning our staff in Biggleswade and Leighton Buzzard they really feel that they are doing just that.
“Members of the public always want to see more ‘Bobbies on the Beat’ and the STaRC Team does just this.
“It also provides our volunteers with opportunities to develop skills in other areas that might interest them, such as Roads Policing and other specialist areas.”
A recent trend has seen a rise in anti-social behaviour in Leighton Buzzard town centre particularly during the evenings at weekends.
In response the Special Constabulary, in support of their regular police colleagues, are providing appropriately timed high profile patrols.
The police say that as the team of Special Constables stationed at Leighton Buzzard continues to grow over the coming months there will be greater opportunities to increase this high profile presence on a more regular basis.
Chief Insp Greg Horsford said: “I am absolutely delighted that the new Specials’ policing model is having such a positive impact particularly in the Central Bedfordshire area where some residents felt they had been forgotten about. It is good for the force, the public and the officers.
“Chief Officer Wayne Humberstone and I both grew up in Upper Caldecote and still live in the Central Bedfordshire area so we see the effect that the Specials are having on a personal and professional level.
“Bedfordshire Police also has the intention of trebling the numbers of the Special Constabulary in Central Bedfordshire in the next two years and I would encourage local residents who would like to make a real impact in their community to consider applying.”
If you are interested in giving something back to your community and becoming a Special Constable then visit www.Bedfordshire.police.uk and click on the recruitment tab.
Alternatively contact the Recruitment team on 01234 842398, or email firstname.lastname@example.org and ask for an application pack.
Beds Police also hold regular Special Constabulary recruitment events (see the website above for further details).