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Gloucestershire Business News

Neighbourhood Policing operation launches as shops and businesses reopen

Cheltenham's Neighbourhood Policing Team is running an operation this week as part of the reopening of non-essential shops and businesses.

From yesterday through to Sunday, officers will be conducting regular patrols in the town centre and at local retail parks following the easing of government guidelines around shopping.

By increasing the policing presence within the town centre and retail parks, officers are aiming to provide reassurance to the public during what some may see as strange circumstances, reduce any potential offending and encourage engagement.

Officers will also be available to support businesses with any issues that may arise within their premises such as opportunistic shoplifting, anti-social behaviour or problems related to social distancing.

Areas that patrols will target include the Lower High Street, Brewery Quarter and the Town Centre East car park and the Community Engagement Vehicle (CEV) will be available as somewhere that concerns can be raised and discussed.

Sergeant Steve Benbow at Gloucestershire Constabulary said: "It is anticipated that there may be a rise in reports of anti-social behaviour and shoplifting at shops in Cheltenham with more people visiting and we are hoping to prevent this from happening.

"We are optimistic that shoppers will co-operate and be happy that businesses are reopening after all of this time however we will be conducting proactive patrols to spot those who may look to take advantage of this by shoplifting or acting anti-socially.

"We have been in contact with local businesses, the council, security companies and BID ambassadors to ensure that there is a multi-agency approach for when shops reopen today and so that businesses are aware that my team will be available if support is needed."

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