POLICE have been praised by a town council for the hard work they do every day as figures were presented by the local area inspector.

At their monthly meeting, councillors were told that Holywell as a whole has seen a 16.8 per cent decrease in crime reports from this time last year – equating to more than 100 less crimes across the town, which is a large part of the marked decrease in crime across the Flintshire North remit.

Inspector Gareth Cust, of the North Flintshire policing team, was present at the meeting and went through each of the wards within the town for councillors to know the bigger picture of crime in their areas.

Focusing on the Central ward, which encompasses the town centre, the police records indicate that overall reports have decreased dramatically by 26 per cent – which is 80 less than reports in 2018.

Data for reports of anti-social behaviour also dropped by 32.7 per cent in the twelve-month period – with 37 less cases recorded.

Inspector Cust said that these figures show a marked improvement compared to the previous summer when more reports of shoplifters, violence and inquisitive crime took place in the high street area.

Ted Palmer, councillor for the central area, welcomed these numbers and said that they are positive step forward for the town centre.

In Greenfield, crime reports had dropped the most in comparison to other wards – with a quarter less crime reports (25.5 per cent) with 28 less reports compared to this time last year.

Looking at anti-social behaviour, the ward has reported 14 less incidents between April 2018 and April 2019 – which is almost half (48.3 per cent).

Cllr Rosetta Dolphin, of the Greenfield ward, praised police for this information and all the good work that goes on day in, day out to keep the streets safe.

She said: “We see the negatives all the time, but we don’t necessarily see this good work that is being done as well.”

The policing team was also thanked by councillors for their increased presence in the area – particularly with a base set up in the Flintshire Connects building on the high street and more visibility through marked police cars.

Moving to Holywell East, the data shared by Inspector Cust showed that crime reports had dropped by 4.5 per cent – that is three less crimes than last year however, reports of anti-social behaviour had risen by 4.5 per cent which is just one extra case in comparison.

The West ward of Holywell was the only area to show an increase in both sets of numbers, with overall crime reports up by 4.3 per cent – equating to an extra six crimes compared to this time last year.

A similar picture was painted with reports of anti-social behaviour which had risen by 6.4 per cent in the area – with 3 more reports flagged up compared to 2018.

Paul Johnson, mayor of Holywell and West ward councillor, said that these numbers should not be seen as a negative thing, and hopes that people are now feeling more comfortable in reporting crime rather than being too afraid to act.

He said: “It is important that as the mayor, and us all as councillors, will help keep the message going that reporting people is not necessarily a sign of things getting worse. It is a sign that, as a community, we are taking a stand against crime and that it will not be tolerated.”