Police in Rutland and local farmers have set up a ‘Farm Watch’ to tackle crime against farms in the area. It’s meant to provide a line of communication between farmers, contractors, landowners and the police, to gather information that may be useful in catching criminals. Members are asked to report all crimes, incidents and anything suspicious, so that intelligence can be gathered and information can be acted upon quickly.
The scheme uses a Fast Text system where the police are able to share information with registered users with a text message. For example, if a suspicious vehicle is reported to the police the details can be sent out by text to members, and if the vehicle is then seen its location can be reported by ringing 101 and reporting it to the police.
Inspector Lou Cordiner, Commander of Rutland local police unit said: “I am delighted we have been able to launch ‘Farm Watch’ as I know that rural and agricultural crime is a concern for many local people. It also builds on our strong relationships with farmers as it will enable us to distribute information very quickly which in turn will help us combat rural crime.”
PCSO 6127 Steve Houghton from Rutland LPU who is the lead for Farm Watch in Rutland said: “Before I became a PCSO I worked in farming and I know that most farmers are not sat in an office waiting for an email, getting information out very quickly is important as they will be out and about working in the fields and farms.
“So far we have had 80 people sign up to Farm Watch in Rutland and I would like to expand the scheme to as many farms as possible. It is free, and all you need is a mobile phone capable of receiving text messages. If you are interested in becoming part of the scheme please get in touch with me.”