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Rural crime-fighting taskforce nominated in international policing award

North Yorkshire Police’s Rural Taskforce recognised in inaugural event among forces from as far as Australia

Britain’s largest rural policing team has been nominated for an inaugural international policing award that organisers say will “celebrate and acknowledge the best in all aspects of 21st century policing”. 

North Yorkshire Police’s Rural Taskforce have been shortlisted in the inaugural World Class Policing Awards, which seek to showcase the achievement and success of policing internationally. 

The awards recognise exceptional performance, efficient collaboration and progressive policing across the world, with the intention of sharing this “world class” policing knowledge with the rest of the policing community.

The awards will be handed out at a ceremony to be held in London on November 14, which will see forces from as far as Australia and New Zealand attending and also vying for gongs.

Speaking after his force received the nomination, inspector Jon Grainge of North Yorkshire Police, said: “The recognition reflects the dedication of the Taskforce, but also colleagues across the force who work so hard to keep our rural communities safe.

“We don’t aim to win awards – we aim to keep rural residents safe by catching criminals and safeguarding our communities. However, it’s very rewarding to see our approach recognised at an international level.”

North Yorkshire Police’s Rural Taskforce takes a unique approach to its policing with what it describes as a “high-visibility, neighbourhood approach” to provincial enforcement – despite its patch being one of the largest areas of countryside in England.

This approach, it says, increases the level of information and intelligence received from its rural communities, giving its residents confidence that they can report matters to the force and that its officers will take action.

Phil Cain, the detective chief constable of the rural taskforce, said of the nomination:  “There is of course lots of work still to be done, and we aren’t complacent, but it’s very reassuring to know that we are right at the forefront of best practice in rural policing nationally and internationally.”

The taskforce has previously won awards in the past, which have included an award for wildlife crime operation of the year for its work to reduce the number of illegal attacks on birds of prey.

Since launching the rural taskforce crime in April 2016, the force has primarily dealt with offences which have included fly-tipping, theft of plants and machinery, as well as equine crime.

A shortlist of 54 policing projects from UK and international forces have been compiled for the World Class Policing Awards, having been whittled down by judges from nearly 120 entries.

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