Rural crime focus for police funding

First published in News by

POLICE in Gwent and South Wales are set to develop an app to help officers in remote locations.

The Gwent force will receive a portion of £2.2 million towards projects which aim to transform policing form the Home Office’s Police Innovation Fund.

In collaboration with South Wales Police, Gwent Police will spend £837,267 on creating the UK’s first collaborative Police mobile data platform and app which will enable frontline officers to transmit and access information in remote and challenging terrains.

In a separate bid led by Gwent PCC Ian Johnston, the pan-Wales Women’s Triage Scheme has been awarded £234,517 to help divert women who have been arrested away from criminality and provide them with a new ‘restorative’ approach to their rehabilitation.

The Wales-wide pilot will run until 2016 and the proposal is fully supported by all four Welsh Police Forces and Police and Crime Commissioners and also the National Offender Management Service which covers the whole of Wales.

Gwent Police is also among 22 Police Forces in England and Wales who will benefit from the £657,000 awarded for the Firearms Licensing Digital Transformation project.

An award of £498,000 also goes to the Minerva Project which is a group of 16 police forces, including Gwent, working to maximise the use and development of their core policing computer system to aid performance.

The Home Office also announced an investment of £39,200 to establish the National Rural Crime Network, an online network which aims to act as a collaborative think tank, researching and implementing ways to reduce crime in rural areas.

Police and crime commissioner for Gwent, Ian Johnston, said: “This funding is truly fantastic news and I would like to congratulate everyone who brought their new and innovative ideas to the table and who worked so hard on making these range of exciting bids a reality.”

Gwent PCC Ian Johnston is one of 28 Commissioners throughout England and Wales who has signed up to participate in and back up the scheme. Mr Johnston and the other Commissioners’ have also pledged to commit £1,000 per year each for the first two years as part of their localised funding commitments to the project.

Gwent Police Assistant Chief Constable, Lorraine Bottomley, said: “I welcome the news of this funding for exciting collaborative and innovative projects in Gwent.

“The Force, and the community it serves, really will reap the benefits of this money being invested in some fundamental and significant local projects, the effects of which will have a positive and far reaching impact on policing in Gwent.

“I look forward to working with our partners to ensure we take full advantage of this investment.”

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