Rural crime has increased by 13.5% across the United Kingdom, bit in the East Midlands the increase is almost 32%, and costs victims £8.8m.
The Police and Crime Commissioner speaking in June this year at the launch of a rural crime survey, said that the survey was an opportunity for people to really make a difference in the understanding of rural crime and help police and other agencies identify solutions to prevent it.
The Commissioner also announced a new Crime Fighting Fund to tackle rural crime in his 2018-19 budget and has already pledged to purchase a specialist vehicle for the county’s Rural Crime Team to expand the scope of its work.
He said that the survey would give rural residents a chance to have their say on the problems affecting their livelihoods and quality of life and help reveal the true scale of rural crime in Nottinghamshire.
“Rural crime is a serious issue and I want anyone who lives in a rural area in Nottinghamshire to know it is a top priority,” he said.
“Wherever you live, you deserve to feel safe and protected and should rightly expect a robust and effective service from your local police.
“We’re working very hard to get it right but there’s always room for improvement.”
The last National Rural Crime Survey, which attracted 13,000 responses, was launched three years ago and revealed the staggering £800m annual cost of crime to rural communities as well as the fear, frustration and under-reporting that exists.
The National Rural Crime Network, which oversees the survey, produced a series of recommendations and – in many areas – police took steps to improve matters.
One of this year’s focuses is whether rural crime continues to be underreported.
Three years ago, one in four said they didn’t report the last crime they’d been a victim of because they didn’t see the point.
Since then, Nottinghamshire Police, with support from the Commissioner, has introduced a number of initiatives designed to tackle rural and wildlife crime, raise awareness amongst the public and encourage people to report crime.
The National Rural Crime Network brings together Police and Crime Commissioners, police forces and organisations that play a key role in rural communities such as the Country Land and Business Association, the National Farmers Union, Neighbourhood Watch, Crimestoppers, Historic England and the Countryside Alliance.