New Safer Neighbourhood Team inspector for East Herts urges public to tell police issues that matter most to them
The new man in charge of neighbourhood policing in Bishop's Stortford, Sawbridgeworth and the rest of East Herts is keen to engage with the public to understand the issues that matter most to them.
Insp Mark Collins took on the Safer Neighbourhood Team (SNT) role last month, following the retirement of his predecessor Chris Hunt.
The married father of two, who lives in the local area, joined Hertfordshire police as a constable in 2006.
His previous job involved managing licensed premises, where he built a working relationship with the police.
While he began his policing career with the intervention response team in North Herts, most of Insp Collins' time has been spent in the east of the county, with both the response and safer neighbourhood teams.
After passing his sergeant's exam, he spent some time working in the force’s control room, dealing with calls into the constabulary and dispatching resources to incidents.
He went on to become the neighbourhood sergeant for Bishop’s Stortford and Sawbridgeworth before being promoted to inspector. His most recent role was as an intervention inspector, which saw him leading the emergency response teams in East Herts and Broxbourne.
Insp Collins said: “The SNT role is crucial to policing. It presents opportunities for my team to make a real difference to people’s lives and gives me an input into directing how policing is delivered to the local community.
“The team at East Herts are fantastic and we're lucky to have such dedicated officers and staff who are really willing to make a difference.”
Talking about his focus for the future, he continued: “For me, preventing crime is the focus. Dealing with issues before they escalate is key; addressing problems and dealing with them swiftly prevents people from becoming victims.
“For example, I’m currently working with members of my team on a newly created youth project to identify risk surrounding our young people and using diversionary tactics to stop them committing crime or being taken advantage of.
“Working with our local partners is also a big part of this prevention work and I am looking forward to continuing and building on the good relationships we already have in place.”
Insp Collins is keen for his team to engage with the public as much as possible so that they can play their part in keeping East Herts a safe place to live, work and visit.
“I'm keen for the team to be visible and to carry out regular engagement activities across the area,” he said.
“East Herts is the largest area in the county and has a really diverse mix of urban and rural challenges, so feedback from members of the public is vitally important as it helps us to understand the issues that matter most to them and focus our efforts accordingly. If you have any issues, please don’t hesitate to contact the team.”
Residents can use the community voice platform echo to let the force know what they should be prioritising in their area.