A dedicated task force of police officers is due to start in West Lancashire from Wednesday 6 November, tacking the issues that matter most to residents.

The task force is made up of a proactive team of four officers, with the responsibility for tackling local priorities including drug dealing, anti-social behaviour and burglary, alongside disrupting organised crime group activity and targeting outstanding offenders. There will be similar teams of four or five officers spread across nine areas in the county.

Specialist target teams are also being strengthened to tackle cross border crime and criminality, focusing on burglary and robbery and there has been an uplift in detectives following public feedback to prioritise investigations around major crimes, child exploitation and domestic abuse.

A new drone team is also operational across the force, with two drones paid for by the proceeds of crime, and a team of four officers funded by the council tax precept. This new technology has been invaluable supporting policing operations including events, missing people and warrants.

The new neighbourhood tasking team is about reconnecting with the communities across Lancashire and getting back to proactive policing and dealing with community concerns.

Ch Supt Sam Mackenzie of Lancashire Constabulary, said: “The introduction of these officers is great news and puts extra officers into our communities. The roll-out of the neighbourhood policing task force will help us to continue tackling key crime hotspots and allow us to be more proactive in preventing the crimes that concern us all the most.

“I expect their impact to be significant in every corner of the county. I believe these officers will make a real difference in our community and look forward to seeing the effects they have.”

Supt Karen Edwards, who oversees policing in West Lancashire added: “The task force will be a welcome addition to policing in the area of West Lancashire and I hope it will provide some reassurance to our local communities.

“We will see them focusing on the issues that matter most to residents as well as those we have identified as the greatest risk, including anti social behaviour, knife crime, organised crime and drug dealing.