A pledge to put more bobbies on the beat will help reassure elderly and vulnerable people in North Wales, says a leading Senedd member.

The promise to increase the number of police officers and staff is contained in the new policing blueprint drafted by the region’s Police and Crime Commissioner, Andy Dunbobbin.

Strengthening neighbourhood policing was a key priority in Mr Dunbobbin’s manifesto when he was elected in May this year.

The news was welcomed by Clwyd South MS Ken Skates during a walkabout in Llangollen with Mr Dunbobbin.

Mr Skates said: “Everybody in the Labour Party across North Wales and indeed farther afield across Wales cheered when the result came in  for Andy.

“Andy is universally popular within the party so everybody was absolutely thrilled by his success.

“He is sincere, authentic and passionate about communities. He’ll bring immense experience and great skills to the role and he’s so deeply rooted in the community as well.

“Andy’s passionate about North Wales and about people’s security, safety and sense of belonging so I  have no doubt he’s going to be a brilliant commissioner.

“His first Police and Crime Plan is hugely ambitious but it responds to and addresses the key concerns that residents across North Wales have – and that we need a really strong plan for neighbourhood policing.

“I know that often people look back nostalgically to when we had police stations right across our communities and what people in the modern era want is a police presence on the ground.

“That’s precisely what Andy is promising with an increase in visible policing which is so important, especially for vulnerable people and the elderly. I think this is something that people will respond to really well.

“The Welsh Government is also playing its part by funding an extra 100 PCSOs across Wales.

“It was a key pledge for Welsh Labour at the election and I am delighted that North Wales is getting 20 additional people keeping people and our communities safe and again it responds to key concerns that people have expressed. It’s massively important to people’s wellbeing.

“The values that a leader has are shown through the policies they promote and Andy’s plan promotes community cohesion, safety, security and wellbeing, particularly for the most vulnerable people in society.

“As an example, the establishment of a Victims’ Panel will be hugely beneficial  in addressing the concerns of victims and their concerns moving forward.”

According to Mr Dunbobbin, he was pleased to join the MS for a tour of Llangollen particularly as Mr Skates was so passionate about the community he served.

Mr Dunbobbin said: “I share that passion because our communities are at the heart of everything we do and policing has a massive role to play across North Wales.

“It’s really important to have a good understanding of our communities and how we can support each other.

“Each community has its own challenges but it’s about working together to make things better in a spirit of partnership.

“I put a huge amount of time and effort into writing my Police and Crime Plan because I wanted to make sure I encompassed everything that was really important to the people of North Wales.

“During the election campaign it was clear that the number one priority for communities is to improve visible so neighbourhood policing is the bedrock of my Police and Crime Plan.

“Local Neighbourhood Policing Teams  provide the visibility and reassurance but are also widely regarded as being an invaluable source of intelligence to tackle the most serious and organised criminality.

“In order to tackle issues ranging from drug dealing in our towns to rural crime on our farms, it’s imperative that all our North Wales communities have positive relationships and experiences with their local police, helping break down existing barriers and empowering residents to have their say on where we as a service should be focusing our efforts.”