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Police: Rural Areas

Volume 486: debated on Wednesday 21 January 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what recent steps she taken to (a) facilitate policing in rural areas and (b) develop methods of assessing levels of public safety in rural communities. (248199)

Following consultation we continue to pay the £30 million rural policing grant in the current CSR period (2008-09 to 2010-11) as part of special formula grant, rather than including it in general formula grant. This ensures that police authorities in more rural areas continue to benefit fully from the provision.

The Policing Pledge, which sets out for the public the service that they can expect to receive from the police anywhere in the country, includes a 20-minute response time for emergency calls from rural areas. Neighbourhood policing teams in rural areas have also been given specific guidance from the National Policing Improvement Agency in recognition that the policing needs in rural areas may differ from those in towns and cities.