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16 February 2011, 16:08 | Updated: 2 March 2011, 12:49
The latest Operation Vision ‘’ high impact’’ day yesterday (Tuesday, Feb 15) got off to an excellent success in Leighton Buzzard with a dawn raid and drug seizure.
The day, which started with a number of warrants being executed for drugs continued into the late evening and is one of a series under Operation Vision.
Officers from the Central Bedfordshire Tactical Tasking Team and local Safer Neighbourhood Teams were joined by the Chief Constable, Alf Hitchcock to execute warrants in Leighton Buzzard, Dunstable and Woburn.
Resulting in cannabis and cash being seized from addresses in Leighton and Woburn; leading to the arrest of a 28-year-old Leighton man for possession with intent to supply and a further man being charged for cultivation of cannabis in Woburn.
Later in the day, the Chief Constable addressed teams made up of Police Officers, Cadets, PCSOs and support staff at the Church Hall in Lammas Walk, Leighton Buzzard before joining them on house-to-house visits in the Meadow Way Estate area. Over 50 police staff, Bedfordshire police officers, Cadets and Specials were out and about in Leighton Buzzard.
Op Vision knocked on the doors of 1254 homes and talked with 331 residents. A crime prevention leaflet was left at every household giving Burglary and vehicle crime advice and asking the public about their concerns and local priorities.
Over 200 residents signed up to be a recipient of ‘Ringmaster’ messages, the scheme provides members with up to date information about crimes, incidents, police initiatives and other news affecting their areas via pre-recorded voice message to a phone line, or as an email. Membership is free, although applicants need to be over 16 and live or work in Bedfordshire.
At police headquarters, volunteers and police staff contacted hundreds of residents with updates following priorities raised during the last two Op Vision days and received positive feedback from the public.
Officers from the Forces Special Constabulary launched high visible anti-social behaviour patrols in the evening in areas of Leighton Buzzard where it has been reported as a problem.
Later in the evening, Central Bedfordshire Council arranged a ‘Let’s Talk Together’ meeting at the Leighton Day Centre. Many residents attended giving them an opportunity to discuss their views on local policing with an officer from the local Safer Neighbourhood Team. Residents also had the chance to speak with representatives from partner agencies such as Central Bedfordshire Council, NHS Bedfordshire and the Fire and Rescue Service followed by a chaired session giving an opportunity for residents to raise issues affecting their quality of life.
Inspector Berni White, who co-ordinated yesterday’s initiative, said: “We received plenty of positive feedback and Meadow Way residents said they felt their area had improved. Overall, residents had no real concerns but said their main priorities are burglary, speeding and parking issues."
She continued: “Today’s initiative provides the public with reassurance and allows us to speak with the public and let them know we have reduced vehicle crime and anti-social behaviour in their area.”