Sussex Police officers were hosted by members of the National Farmers’ Union (NFU) to discuss farming and rural issues.
NFU Adviser James Osman discussed a range of farming topics and types of rural crime with 20 officers at the Iford Estate near Lewes, courtesy of estate manager Ben Taylor.
Each training session included a quiz and aimed to give officers an overview of the farming calendar, a rundown on the various types of rural crime and some of the relevant legislation.
The NFU also heard how technological advances are helping tackle crime.
Mr Osman said: “We are pleased that Sussex Police views tackling rural crime as a priority and days like this help officers to understand the issues that farmers face.
“There are many different types of crime that farmers experience and it was good to explain some of the worst issues we face in Sussex, such as livestock worrying and hare coursing”
The topics dicussed included a farming overview, agricultural machinery and its function, value, security marking and tracking devices, fuel, crop protection, livestock and cropping, access, dog attacks on livestock, and hare coursing.
Sergeant Tom Carter, Sussex Police’s lead for wildlife crime, said: “It is important for our officers to understand the impact of crime on rural communities and how vulnerable rural businesses are to criminal acts.
“Crime in rural locations presents very different challenges to what many officers are more used to dealing with, so this was a valuable opportunity to demonstrate to them what to expect.
“We were able to show them what to look out for on the ground without the constraints of computer presentations in classrooms. We were also able to inform them about new techniques for preventing and investigating rural and wildlife crime, enhancing their skills and knowledge.”
Sgt Tom Carter thanked all those concerned with the organisation of the training. Further training sessions are planned for the coming months.
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