Dorset - East
East Dorset is one of the larger policing sections in Dorset, covering an area of approximately 157 square miles with a resident population of 85,000. It incorporates the historic market town of Wimborne with its large number of retail outlets, Ferndown with an expanding residential population and localised town centre, and Verwood, an increasingly popular location with a rapidly expanding housing market and retail outlets. In addition, there are substantial industrial estates within the section’s area that provide much employment and business opportunity for East Dorset. Local officers work closely with the business community around security and crime prevention advice.
The section also includes a number of villages spread across the area, some smaller in size, such as Sixpenny Handley and some much larger, such as Corfe Mullen. Each village has its own unique infrastructure incorporating residential areas, schools and businesses, and these distinct communities each represent a different policing challenge. Much of the section is rural countryside with the A31 providing the main arterial route. This route crosses the section and could be said to be the 'gateway' to East Dorset and beyond.
Each ward area within East Dorset has a dedicated Neighbourhood Policing Team (NPT) which tackles local issues raised through our Partners and Communities Together (PACT) processes and other community forums. We share a very close and effective working relationship with our partners in East Dorset District Council, as well as many other locally based agencies and groups. Community policing is vital to our success and as such, we will continue to develop partnerships and initiatives with the aim of enabling the residents, businesses and visitors in East Dorset to be safe and feel safe.
Crime levels in East Dorset have decreased over the past three years. There were 2,778 recorded crimes in 2010/11, a small increase to 2,864 recorded crimes in 2011/12 and a reduction to 2,468 recorded crimes in 2012/13. This is an overall reduction in recorded crime of around 11% in East Dorset and represents 310 fewer victims of crime than there were three years ago.