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PCC sees how new vehicle is bringing policing closer to people in rural communities


26 August 2022

North Wales Police and Crime Commissioner, Andy Dunbobbin, visited Dolgellau on 25 August to see how a new mobile policing service is making sure that rural communities in North Wales have better access to support from police and that they know where to turn if they become victims of crime.

This new dedicated vehicle provides a visible base for North Wales Police Officers and PCSOs to actively engage with the communities of North Wales and offer a mobile police station service. It means that staff can work away from a station for longer periods of time, as well as being able to invite members of the public inside for meetings or general discussions.

The vehicle has been jointly funded by the Police and Crime Commissioner and North Wales Police and is decked out in police livery like other Local Policing Services vehicles, meaning the van is identifiable to the public as a police vehicle. It also displays the logo of the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner.

However, unlike most other police vehicles, this one offers many of the comforts and facilities that mean rural communities can meet police staff and share their thoughts in a welcoming, friendly and private environment. It includes a meeting table for four people, a small worktop and kitchen area including a sink, microwave and hot water boiler, charging points for laptops and phones, a Wi-Fi router that can be used to connect devices, temperature controls, lighting, and an external awning to offer weather protection and additional space outside. 

The vehicle visited Y Marian Car Park in Dolgellau for an engagement session with the community and to raise awareness of North Wales Police’s community alert system. During his visit, Andy Dunbobbin met PCSOs Jason Jones, Mark Holland, Delyth Edwards, Gill Duffy-Williams and Sergeant Simon Barlow of North Wales Police, Paul Williams Community Safety officer for North Wales Fire and Rescue Service, Arwel Williams from ADRA housing and Mayor of Dolgellau, John Raghoobar. Following his visit to the new vehicle, the PCC had a walk around Dolgellau Town Centre with the Mayor to discuss policing matters and concerns in the area.

A key part of the Police and Crime Commissioner’s manifesto prior to his election was to provide more police and to improve visible policing to offer reassurance, gather intelligence and disrupt criminal activity. In the Police and Crime Plan that followed his election, Andy Dunbobbin also committed to supporting victims and communities and delivering safer neighbourhoods, with rural communities identified as key areas for outreach. The new vehicle is a key part of this strategy.

Police and Crime Commissioner for North Wales, Andy Dunbobbin, commented: “I was delighted to visit Dolgellau to see the new police engagement vehicle and mobile police station and to meet the dedicated officers and staff whose hard work made it possible. I believe in making policing as accessible as possible for all our communities across North Wales, especially those might be far from the nearest Police Station, as many of our rural areas are.

“With this new vehicle, local communities across Gwynedd and Anglesey will be able access policing services right on their doorstep, getting the support and advice from the North Wales Police that will help keep them, their families, and their communities safe from crime.”

Sergeant Simon Barlow, Local Policing Services, North Wales Police, commented: “It was a pleasure to welcome the PCC to Dolgellau and to show him our new engagement vehicle, which will make an important difference in the way we serve people in rural areas across North-West Wales. The new vehicle means we are able to meet people in their own communities and helps ensure that policing is brought closer to home. North Wales Police is committed to making North Wales the safest place in the UK, and part of that is making sure we are as accessible and available as possible to all residents and visitors to the region. Our engagement session in Dolgellau was a great example of this aim in action.”

The vehicle will be used in the Ynys Môn, Gwynedd North and Gwynedd South areas and will be managed by neighbourhood policing teams. As well as serving local communities on a regular basis, it will also be used during peak holiday weeks when there is an influx of visitors and tourists, as well as for events, engagement, recruitment sessions, and other policing operations.

Residents can find out where the new vehicle will be visiting by following North Wales Police social media pages and via North Wales Community Alert, the free messaging service for people who live, work and visit North Wales. Sign up and learn more at: Home - North Wales Community Alert