A big majority of people in Herefordshire feel safe and have confidence in the police, according to a major new survey.

But only slightly over half are satisfied with the numbers of police they see in the community.

The results of an independent survey involving interviews with 600 people across the county in the last year have just been released.

In Herefordshire, which has a low crime rate compared to most areas, they show:

  • 87% of people have confidence in West Mercia Police
  • 81% think crime & anti-social behaviour in their community is not a big problem, or not a problem at all
  • 51% are satisfied with levels of local policing.
  • 66% feel the police understand their needs in the community
  • 69% think the police are doing a ‘good’, or ‘excellent’ job

Police and Crime Commissioner John Campion said: “I promised I would ensure our communities are safe, and feel safe.

"This study, and its results, are clear examples of those promises being delivered.

“The overall picture is encouraging, but there is more to do. Too many people don’t feel safe.

"I have increased officer numbers in West Mercia to their highest level since 2012. "In return, the Chief Constable has committed to improving police visibility, accessibility and responses, as well as public confidence and victim satisfaction. "Those improvements need to be felt right across West Mercia.”

There are 100 new police officers currently being trained and another 115 have been budgeted for.

That would take total numbers for West Mercia to 2,145, back to the figure they were at in 2012

Deputy Chief Constable Amanda Blakeman said: “It’s promising that this study supports this and shows that we are providing a strong, compassionate service that local people have confidence in.

“We are working to further improve visibility, victim support and satisfaction and tackling the issues that mean the most to our communities.”