Thames Valley farmers and landowners back police in continuing fight against rural crime

06 December 2018

Thames Valley Police meeting

Thames Valley Police has held discussions with the NFU and the CLA on the importance of working together with farmers and landowners to tackle crime.

Thames Valley Police chief constable Francis Habgood updated NFU and CLA representatives on the constabulary’s resources, its strategy for tackling rural crime and partnership working during an annual liaison meeting in Oxfordshire last week (November 28).

During the meeting at Sescut Farm, Woodeaton, hosted by Martin Brown, farmers and landowners heard how Thames Valley Police gathers intelligence from reports of rural crime and works with neighbouring police forces.

NFU South East Regional Director William White said: “The Chief Constable outlined the challenges he faces and the vital role that farmers and landowners can play in protecting themselves from becoming victims of crime. Despite ongoing funding pressures, the Chief committed to tackling rural crime by enabling the right response to be deployed in the right place at the right time. He confirmed that Thames Valley Police’s Delivery Plan still has rural policing at its heart.”

Farmer and landowner representatives of both organisations were present, from Berkshire, Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire. The meeting featured a farm tour for police when aspects of on-farm security were discussed.

CLA South East Regional Director Robin Edwards said: “We appreciate that police have a range of significant pressures but we want to ensure that tackling rural crime such as fly-tipping, hare coursing and machinery theft remains a top priority, as it affects so many landowners and farmers.

“Thames Valley Police are a pro-active force and we look forward to continuing to work closely together in the future.

“We would urge all victims of crime to report incidents and not let them go unrecorded.”

The meeting included a discussion on continuing issues arising from traveller encampments and incursions, farm security and thefts of high value tools and machinery.

Police received an update on agricultural policy and the economic outlook during the tour of Sescut Farm.