The Minister for Policing, Brandon Lewis, has visited Lincolnshire Police as part of an operation he has called ‘Operation Cops’ which involves him visiting forces to meet frontline staff and hear first-hand about the issues affecting them and the work they do in the community.
Chief Constable Neil Rhodes welcomed the Minister to police headquarters yesterday morning (Thursday December 1) and introduced his fellow chief officers.
The Minister then had discussions with a group of Constables and Sergeants and amongst the subjects covered were police funding, the impact of summer visitors and assaults on officers. He was also briefed on the Blue Light Collaboration project and the way the force is developing the use of mobile data and body worn video.
Mr Lewis also visited the Lincolnshire Fire and Rescue training facility at Waddington and met Chief Fire Officer Nick Borrill and colleagues, Victoria Atkins MP and Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner Stewart Tweedale.
In addition to watching a tri-service rescue demonstration they were briefed on the facilities available to the emergency services at the site.
Later in the afternoon, accompanied by Victoria Atkins MP, they visited a farm near Lincoln and met a group of NFU members including Deputy Chair of the NFU Tim Casey and Councillor Graham Marsh, Deputy Leader of East Lindsey District Council and member of the Police and Crime Panel. They discussed the Lincolnshire Police response to rural crime
Chief Constable Neil Rhodes said he was really pleased that Brandon Lewis had accepted his invitation to visit Lincolnshire. “In addition to a half hour one to one with me when we discussed the good operational performance of the force and our challenging financial circumstances, he has heard some pretty straight talking from our officers about the challenges of their role. We were really encouraged by his positive attitude. He was impressed by our Blue Light Collaboration plans and has agreed to return in May 2017 to formally open our shared police and fire headquarters,” he said.
Minister for Policing and the Fire Service Brandon Lewis added his impression of the day, “During my visit to Lincolnshire, I had the pleasure of meeting frontline police officers to hear about the great work they are doing to protect and serve their local community on a daily basis.
“I was also impressed by their Blue Light Collaboration plans, and look forward to seeing these being implemented.”