Visible policing

GETTING bobbies out of their cars and onto the beat is one of the top priorities for Inspector Alistair Robertson, the new Burgh Inspector for Forfar, Kirriemuir and Letham.

A self confessed “old-cop”, Inspector Robertson attended this month’s meeting of Forfar Community Council to forge links with the organisation and to stress the importance of working together as a community. He touched on a number of areas which have been raised at community council in the past, including the anti-social antics of a group of “undesirables” who are causing concern at The Cross.

Since taking over his new role he has addressed them personally, giving them a “heads up” on the alcohol free zone which is about to be introduced on Forfar streets on September 29.

He spoke of plans to introduce a Friday Night Project for young people in the town, which had proved successful in other Angus towns.

Inspector Robertson stressed the need for high visibility policing; getting officers out onto the streets which he had done since taking over at Forfar. The main priorities were public safety and public reassurance.

He gave a brief insight into his 25-year police career which included working alongside his predecessor Inspector Peter McLennan, He was an Inspector in Arbroath and a Sergeant in Carnoustie and spent 12 years in the drugs branch, CID, Scottish Crime Squad and Scottish Crime and Drug Reporting Agency.

He welcomed the £300,000 “cash from criminals” award made to Forfar Athletic and Forfar Farmington Football Clubs for an all-weather pitch at Station Park stating: “I think it is really important that you see the benefit of money coming back into the community.”

Inspector Robertson also worked as a community liaison officer in Dundee, where he served for ten years.

He stressed he is keen to get his officers out on the street, introducing themselves to local business-people and members of the community so that the public know police officers by name.

He explained Angus is one of the safest places in Scotland to live, and Forfar is one of the safest places in Angus to live.

Whilst there had been a growing drug culture over the last 15 years, he gave his assurances that it was not a case of “if”, but “when”, these people receive police attention.