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NCJ Number: 81969 Add to Shopping cart Find in a Library
Title: Skelmersdale Co-ordinated Police Experiment
Author(s): J Brown
Corporate Author: Cranfield Institute of Technology
Dept of Social Policy
United Kingdom
Date Published: 1981
Page Count: 33
Sponsoring Agency: Cranfield Institute of Technology
Cranfield, Bedford Mk43 Oal, England
Cranfield Institute of Technology
Cranfield, Bedfordshire MK43 OAL, England
National Institute of Justice/
Rockville, MD 20849
NCJRS Photocopy Services
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
Sale Source: Cranfield Institute of Technology
Cranfield, Bedfordshire MK43 OAL,
United Kingdom

National Institute of Justice/
NCJRS paper reproduction
Box 6000, Dept F
Rockville, MD 20849
United States of America

NCJRS Photocopy Services
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Type: Program/Project Evaluation
Language: English
Country: United Kingdom
Annotation: This evaluation assesses the effectiveness of the Skelmersdale Co-ordinated Police Experiment in Lancashire, England. Initiated in 1979 to explore an alternative to response policing, the program involved release of more officers for community contact and greater use of foot patrols.
Abstract: The system was intended to cut down bureaucratic procedures and reduce paperwork. Skelmersdale was selected for the experiment because the new town included a variety of urban and rural residents, mostly disadvantaged, and because vandalism rates were high. Manpower at the Sergeant and Constable level was redeployed into two groups: four foot patrols in three shifts responsible for policing separate town quarters and a regional emergency response team as a backup for subdivisional areas. A new Incident Logging System using a minicomputer was introduced to meet police information demands. After 18 months the experiment was evaluated on the basis of crime statistics, manpower availability, capability of patrol teams, officer and community attitudes, and flexibility. The results suggest that manpower availability has increased and that the new system has been relatively successful in achieving a balance between emergency and peacekeeping services. The new information-gathering resources enable police to respond more quickly to local needs, and the flow of criminal intelligence from direct police-community contacts has grown considerably. While public response to the system is very positive, officers are ambivalent. Better coordination and supervision of patrol and response teams could improve police attitudes and flexibility. Furthermore, foot patrols require increased recognition and operational priorities if they are to attract competent officers and work with response teams. The report concludes that the Skelmersdale model represents a successful pattern of resource deployment which revives valuable police traditions and can be adapted to a variety of circumstances. Maps, samples of incident logs and incident/message codes, and statistical tables on crimes and manpower are appended.
Index Term(s): England; Foot patrol; Police community relations; Police information systems; Police manpower deployment; Policing innovation; Program evaluation
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