Community police numbers drop by more than half in York

Front line PCSO numbers have dropped by more than half in York since 2016.

PCSO’s passing out in 2014

Liberal Democrat Councillor Ashley Mason, who is currently serving as the Vice Chair to the Police & Crime Panel, recently submitted a Freedom of Information request to North Yorkshire Police Force. He wanted to kow the number of community police officers patrolling the streets of the City

In response, Cllr Mason was told that there are currently 25 front line PCSO’s in York.

This compares to 64 in 2016.

Cllr Mason had also requested the figures for the last 10 years, but unfortunately, was told that this information was not recorded.

This revelation comes amidst growing concerns that the fall in police numbers, due to Government cuts, has lead to increases in crimes throughout England. Although this has been denied by Home Secretary, Amber Rudd, a leaked report from her own department, has suggested reductions in police numbers were “likely” to have led to the increase.

Earlier this year, PCC Julia Mulligan promised to look into the neighbourhood policing system in York, after many local councillors expressed concerns about the lack of local officers in their communities.

Councillor Ashley Mason, Liberal Democrat and Vice Chair of the Police & Crime Panel:

“PCSOs are a vital link between the police and the communities they serve.  To loose so many over two years is shocking.”

“It is interesting to see that the Police and Crime Commissioner say that numbers high, which suggests that some PCSO’s are being taken away from the City of York.”

“I will be writing to the Police and Crime Commissioner to express my concerns and insist that her review of the force begin as soon as possible”

Crime rising in York

Crime figures for York

Councillors will consider a disturbing report on crime rates in York when they meet next week.

Figures being reported to a scrutiny committee suggest that 11,306 crimes were reported in the City during the first 9 months of the present financial year.

That compares to 11,221 reported in the whole of the previous year.

Detailed anti-social behaviour figures are not yet available but instances of violent crime were on the rise.

Police UK neighbourhood figures paint a similar picture

Crime in west York

In January there were 144 crimes reported in the Westfield Ward. Most of these concerned anti social behaviour

During the preceding year, 52% of crimes concerned anti-social behaviour, 15% violence or sexual behaviour and 12% criminal damage (vandalism).

Crime levels usually fall in the winter, so the underlying trend will only become clear in a couple of months’ time.

LibDem Councillor highlights concerns about anti social behaviour in west York

Cllr Ashley Mason continued to closely scrutinise the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner (OPCC) at yesterdays North Yorkshire Police & Crime Panel.


The PCC agreed with Cllr Mason that work was needed to review neighbourhood policing in York, following public concerns. 

Because of these concerns, a public meeting for residents and community leaders has been organised to raise issues with the Deputy Chief Constable on the 19th December, at West Offices, York (see below).

We have seen a more effective police presence in west York over the last few weeks. Offices attended Wednesdays Foxwood Residents Association meeting to provide an update following incidents of vandalism in the area.

The neighbourhood policing team (left) have also been using social media to update residents (left) on the progress they  are making.

Thursday’s Police and Crime Panel saw welcomed engagement with younger residents, as students from York College’s Public Services course attended to put questions to the panel.  Cllr Mason, who originally suggested to the panel to hold the meeting at York College, was pleased to see young people participating.

Cllr Mason pressed the Commissioner regarding Freedom of Information (FOI) practice at the OPCC and North Yorkshire Police, and additionally, requested an update on the progress of the 101 service.

Given recent negative coverage regarding the Force’s handling of FOI requests and reports of callers suffering delays to speak to operators via the101 service, Cllr Mason felt it fundamental that Julia Mulligan update the public.

Cllr Ashley Mason said:

“We must continue to scrutinise the OPCC and ensure vital police services are maintained to an excellent standard.  Recent reports have suggested that this has not been the case and therefore, the OPCC must be upfront and relay this information back to the public they serve.  Services such 101 are hugely important to the local community and I will continue to push for better standards.

I was also delighted to see students from York College at Thursday’s Panel, having originally requested that the Panel increase its engagement with younger residents.  It is so important that young people are heard at the local level and I will continue to amplify their voice where possible in all areas of my council duties.”

Residents can attend the public meeting on the 19th December at 6pm. There is no need to pre-book, simply attend West Offices. For further details, please contact Cllr Mason on

Policing concerns at record high levels in Westfield

Early results from a survey of residents opinion on public service standards have revealed that over a third of respondents rate policing in the estate as “poor”. When asked about Policing services residents rated it as

Vandalism a growing problem

  • Good – 13%
  • Satisfactory – 49%
  • Poor – 38%

This represents a marked decline from previous results

Many residents, responding to a separate Westfield Focus survey, said that they hadn’t seen a Police Officer or PCSO in their street during the previous 4 weeks

The Lib Dems have now announced that they would give the North Yorkshire police force an extra £2.8 million a year

Liberal Democrats have announced they would boost investment in police forces by £300m a year. This is in stark contrast to the Conservatives who have overseen devastating cuts to community policing. Theresa May as Home Secretary and now Prime Minister has cut policing budgets by over £2bn, eroding the very fabric of community policing.

Under the Liberal Democrats North Yorkshire would see a funding increase of £2.8 million a year. This could be used to restore a visible policing presence in the community and ensure the police have the training and tools to deal with the changing nature of crime.

“This investment in our police is absolutely vital. Under Theresa May – first as Home Secretary and now as Prime Minister, our police have had to deal with the most brutal of cuts. These are now cutting into the bone.

“Our police work tirelessly to keep us safe and this Government has completely betrayed them.

“Only the Liberal Democrats have a credible plan to reverse the increase in violent crime, boost community confidence and ensure the police have the resources they need to keep us safe.”


  •  On policing cuts: According to figures from the National Audit Office (NAO), from 2010/11 to 2015/16 central government grant to police and crime commissioners and their equivalents in London including specific grants and council tax freeze grants has reduced £2.2 billion in real terms. This represents a 22% real terms reduction. –
  • On police strength: At 31 March 2016 total strength of the 43 police forces in England & Wales reached just over 124,000 FTE officers. This is the lowest number of police officers recorded under the current strength measure. This is not a pattern we see in Scotland where police numbers have seen year on year increases almost continuously since 1985.
  • On neighbourhood policing: In the PEEL report Her Majesty’s Inspector of Constabularies warned that the neighbourhood policing model was under threat due to funding cuts. The report stated:
  • Since 2015, there has been a substantial drop in the proportion of people who say they have seen the police, on foot or in a police car, regularly, in their area. Our research shows that, now, fewer than one in five people feel there is a regular uniformed police presence in their area. Where neighbourhood teams exist, police officers are routinely taken away from their local areas to meet demands in other parts of the force area, leaving a reducing number of PCSOs as the mainstay of community teams. –

Acomb team in “Top Cop” poll bid

Voting opens on the North Yorkshire Police Public Choice Award

Keep calm NYPMembers of the public are being invited to cast their vote, and decide who will win this year’s coveted Public Choice Award at the North Yorkshire Police Annual Awards event.

Over the course of the last year, a number of police officers, staff and volunteers have been nominated for a commendation, for demonstrating courage, compassion or inspiration, over and above the call of duty.  From these commendations, eight finalists have been selected, and members of the public are now being asked to vote for the individual or team that they want to receive the Public Choice Award for 2016.

The winner of the Public Choice Award will be announced by the Police and Crime Commissioner, Julia Mulligan, at the North Yorkshire Police Annual Awards event in November.  The event will also include awards for Lifetime Achievement, and the presentation of the Glenn Goodman Trophy for the most outstanding Special Constable.

The 2016 Public Choice Award finalists are:

  • PC Xavi Lopez from Harrogate, who prevented two girls from jumping from a railway bridge
  • PC Michael Tinsley from Scarborough, who single-handedly dealt with a double knife threat from two violent and intoxicated women
  • PCs Gregory, Ellison, Harvey, Scott and Churchward, and PSCOs Lewis and Taylor from York, who were first on the scene at a dramatic fatal stabbing incident at a house in Acomb
  • York PCSOs Dowson, Warburton, Harris, Calpin, Martin and Burgoyne who entered a burning building to stop a fire spreading to neighbouring buildings
  • DC Chris Ryan from Selby, who tracked a violent criminal all the way to Costa Rica and negotiated his return to the UK to face justice
  • PCSOs Di Smith and Ange Kaye, based at Catterick Garrison, who worked both on and off-duty to help a woman in severe distress to get the life-saving help she needed
  • Acting DI Steve Menzies from Craven, who has raised thousands of pounds for local youth charities
  • The Serious Crime Team, whose painstaking work secured a conviction in a “first of its kind” landmark manslaughter case


To cast your vote in the North Yorkshire Police Public Choice Award 2016 click HERE to vote.


York crime levels up

Figures published today by the Office of National Statistics (ONS) confirm that crime levels in York are increasing.
National Crime stats Jan 2016

click to enlarge

The main concern in York will be the violence figures which have crept up.

Also on the increase in recent months have been theft offences, drug misuse, non domestic burglaries and sexual offences,

The largest number of reports received by the Police concern anti social behaviour. ASB offences are not monitored on the national crime report.

The local Police commanders are at pains to point out that North Yorkshire, as a whole, is the safest county in the UK in which to live.

You can find out about crime incidents in your,and neighbouring, streets by clicking here

York crime update

CCTV appeal following York food outlet assault

Police have issued CCTV images of three men they would like to speak to about an assault at a food outlet in York.

CCTV appeal following York food outlet assault

At about 3am on Sunday 15 November 2015, an assault took place in Subway on Clifford Street, leaving the victim – a man in his twenties – with minor facial injuries.

Police would like to speak to the three men pictured on CCTV, as they may have important information that could assist the investigation into the incident.

Anyone who recognises the men is asked to contact North Yorkshire Police. Call 101, select option 2, and ask for PC Joanne Marshall. You can also email

If you wish to remain anonymous, you can pass information to Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

Please quote reference number 12150203051 in connection with this incident.

Man wanted for breach of bail and failing to attend court

North Yorkshire Police are asking for the public’s help to find a man wanted for breaching his bail conditions and failing to appear in court.

Alexander Ighodalo

Alexander Ighodalo, 36, who lives in Markham Street, York, but holds dual Nigerian and Italian citizenship, was charged with money laundering and fraud offences in December relating to a £42,000 fraud.

He failed to comply with his bail conditions during January and failed to appear at Harrogate Magistrates’ Court on 7 January 2016.

Mr Ighodalo also has links to the Manchester area and the security industry.

Police are appealing to anyone who has seen him or knows of his current whereabouts to contact them.

If you can help the police investigation to find Alexander Ighodalo, please call North Yorkshire Police on 101, select option 2 and ask for York Investigation Hub.

If you wish to remain anonymous, you can call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

Please quote reference number 12150204645 when passing on information.

44 crimes reported in Front Street area during November 2015

There was a significant increase in the level of crimes reported in the Front Street area (polling district KB) in November 2015 compared to the same month in 2014. 

A graph shows a steady increase in crime reports over the last year. The figures have been taken from the Police web site 

Most of the reports concern anti-social behaviour – which has increased since the opening of a centralised “hub” in the City centre which appears to have drawn police resources away from the Westfield area.

There have also been a significant number of shoplifting reports.

click to enlarge

click to enlarge

The number of crimes reported by type are:

  • Anti Social behaviour 13 
  • Cycle theft 1
  • Burglary 3
  • Criminal damage and arson 5
  • Drugs 1
  • Theft 4
  • Public order 1
  • Shop lifting 11
  • Vehicle Crime 1
  • Violence and sexual offences 4

This compares with a total of 30 offences reported in November 2014

Crime levels in Acomb remain relatively low compared to most other parts of the country.

The Crime and Policing commissioner Julia Mulligan is consulting on whether to increase the police tax level from April, although no assurances have been given that any extra money raised will be used to increase street level policing resources in west York.

Julia Mulligan faces a re-election ballot on May 5th.

Policing news: Special constable recruitment starts, 2 sought after alcohol theft


Special Constable recruitment opens. Make a difference – join the team

North Yorkshire Police is looking to recruit at least 70 new Special Constables during its 2016 recruitment campaign which opens on 4 January.

Specials May 2015

Special Constables are volunteer police officers who have the same uniform and powers as regular (paid) police officers. They volunteer a minimum of 16 hours per month to policing York and North Yorkshire and carry out a full range of operational, front-line duties.

North Yorkshire Police currently has 198 Special Constables and is looking for new recruits to be based in every district of North Yorkshire.

“Specials” as they are known, come from all walks of life and backgrounds which means that they bring with them a whole host of skills and abilities which complement those of their regular (paid) colleagues.

They go through a rigorous training programme before they qualify to go out on the beat where they cover a wide range of duties from policing public events, to attending emergency incidents.

They can also choose to undertake further training and specialise in a particular area of policing such as public order, (policing protests, football matches etc) and roads policing.

Click here to read more

CCTV issued after York alcohol voucher fraud

Police have issued CCTV images of two men they would like to speak to after fraudulent vouchers were used to buy alcohol in York.

CCTV issued after York alcohol voucher fraud 1

At about 5.40pm on 5 November 2015, two men entered the Asda store in Monks Cross, and selected a large amount of alcohol from the shelf, worth about £320. They scanned this through a self-service checkout, and paid for it using a quantity of £5 money-off vouchers. The vouchers were later found to be fraudulent.

Despite extensive enquiries, the men involved have not yet been identified.

Police would like to speak to the two men pictured on CCTV, as they may have important information that could assist the investigation.

CCTV issued after York alcohol voucher fraud 2

Anyone who recognises the men is asked to contact North Yorkshire Police. Please call 101, select option 2, and ask for PC Michael Cooper. You can also email If you wish to remain anonymous, you can pass information to Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111. Please quote reference number 12150198645 in connection with this incident.

Major police operation to clamp down on York burglaries

An operation to protect York residents against a new garage burglary ‘exploit’ saw dozens of properties visited and more than 100 items security marked in a single night.

Dot peen property marking

On Tuesday 15 September, one police officer and eight PCSOs from York North Safer Neighbourhood Team, boosted by the support of 12 Special Constables, took to the streets of Rawcliffe.

The clampdown follows a significant rise in burglaries in the area, often involving offenders exploiting a weakness in certain garage doors in order to steal property, particularly pedal cycles.

Residents in the Rawcliffe area were shown how criminals commit such burglaries, and given advice on how to simply and effectively secure their garages in response.

Officers also brought with them three ‘dot peen’ marking kits which were made available to residents to get their property security marked and registered. In total, 66 bikes were marked, as well as 17 tablets, 12 laptops and 11 other items including phones and guitars.

Officers visited every property in Beaverdyke, Angram Close, Leighton Croft, Eldwick Close, Swinsty Court, Chelkar Way, Baden Court, Fewston Drive, Lindley Road, Barnby Close, Ebsay Drive, Lanshaw Croft, Redmires Close, Whitley Close, Haythorth Close, Handley Close, Wellesley Close and Bransholme Drive.

When there was no answer, a letter was posted through the door offering crime prevention advice and inviting people to a dot peen property marking drop-in session on 26 September 2015 at Clifton Moor Church and Community Centre from 6pm to 8pm. More information about dot peen is available at

PC Steve Gillespie, of York North Safer Neighbourhood Team, said: “I’d like to stress the importance of adding additional security measures to your garages to ensure that you too do not become a burglary victim.

“I strongly recommend the installation of security measures such as garage defenders or ground anchors. I am sure the cost of having to replace stolen items will far outweigh the cost of installing this equipment.

“Furthermore, allowing the police to mark your items – such as pedal cycles, gardening tools, golfing equipment, mobile phones and almost anything else you can think of – ensures that our chances of reuniting you with your  property, should it be lost or stolen, are greatly increased. It also assists us in ensuring that the North Yorkshire Police area remains the safest place in England.”

The crime prevention campaign will continue, and officers have stepped up patrols in the area, including patrols in marked and unmarked vehicles, and on marked and unmarked bikes throughout the night.

Anyone who sees any suspicious activity is urged to report it to the police immediately. Such reports assist officers in preventing crime and catching offenders with stolen property in their possession.

PC Gillespie praised the contribution of North Yorkshire Police Special Constables, volunteers with the same powers as full-time police officers: “Without the support of our colleagues from the Special Constabulary giving up their midweek evening to assist these patrols, it would not have been possible to visit as many people, on as many streets, or to have marked as much property as we did.”

Two boys, aged 16 and 14, were arrested on 13 September on suspicion of burgling a garage in the Rawcliffe area. Both have been released on bail pending further enquiries.