New officer on the beat is a 'triumph' for Newmarket Town Council
Newmarket’s own Police Community Support Officer (PCSO) will be on duty within weeks thanks to years of campaigning by the town council, which will be paying for her first two years on the beat.
Rachel Darvill is set to become a familiar face in the town after she starts patrolling Newmarket’s streets on April 8, when she will focus on engaging with young people, targeting antisocial behaviour, and tackling parking within the town.
PCSO Darvill, who formerly worked at AXA insurance and as a school secretary, said she was looking forward to completing her training and going on the beat. “I’m looking forward to getting to know the area, what the hotspots are and what people want me to do,” she said.
“I signed up to be more involved with people and to give back to the community – I think that’s really important.”
Cllr Andy Drummond was town mayor in 2016 when the town council first agreed to spend £32,000 a year to fund the post after the front desk at Newmarket’s former police station in Vicarage Road closed. He said it was positive news for the town.
“I remember when I was a lad and bobbies were on the beat and people liked to see the police. If you were up to no good you didn’t, but the majority of people think police visibility is very, very important,” he said.
Cllr Drummond said without continued pressure and funding from the town council Newmarket would not have the ‘expensive luxury’ of a dedicated PCSO.
And current town mayor Rachel Hood hailed it as a ‘triumph’ for the council. “It is something we have pushed and pushed for,” she said.
“Thanks to our re-organisation of the council’s finances we have put the money aside to pay for the PCSO. Enormous thanks go to our council manager Roberta Bennett who worked so hard and has been invaluable throughout our sustained campaign.”