Flintshire town with 17,000 - and two police officers

Reporter:

Lois Hough

JUST two dedicated police officers are responsible for patrolling the whole of Buckley, the Leader has learned.

Two officers are currently on light duties leaving one community beat manager and one community support officer to police the town for the foreseeable future.

Concerned councillors are calling for urgent replacements and say the death of 24-year-old Peter Jones following an assault outside the Potters Wheel pub in May should be used as an indicator of the need for a police presence in the town.

South Flintshire Inspector Martin Best assured councillors that “robust policing” would continue in Buckley but councillors remain unconvinced.

Former mayor Carol Ellis made the worrying discovery when she requested an officer to attend a neighbourhood meeting in Alltami.

She told a meeting of Buckley Town Council: “I was told the only person who could attend could not because they were on restricted duties.

“I had the task of explaining to residents why the police couldn’t attend. The two officers on light duties should be replaced because we are a big town.

“The problem is there and it’s for the foreseeable future.”

Bistre West councillor Ron Hampson added: “We are a town of 17,000 people and we need a police presence.

“There are two people on light duties and they are going to be off for at least a year. There is no question about it.

“We need replacements for these people. It is imperative.”

Bistre West Cllr John Woolley said: “Police officers work in partners so if we have two people on light duties, it essentially means we have four people off.

“We should have cover brought in because we are a growing town. People say Buckley is a low crime area but not so long ago a man was killed on Precinct Way by a single punch.

“We need that police presence to maintain and improve the situation we have at the moment.”

Insp Best told the Leader four officers formed the Buckley local neighbourhood policing team but more than 50 officers across South Flintshire were on standby in case of emergency.

He said: “I would like to offer my assurances to the people of Buckley that robust policing will continue in the town. We work as one big team.”

See full story in the Leader

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