A CONFERENCE on wildlife crime held by West Mercia Police and Warwickshire Police has been deemed a success.

People from across the region gathered on Tuesday (February 3) to discuss new measures to reduce and prevent wildlife and rural crime within the force area.

Several speakers provided an overview of local issues and unveiled a range of innovative projects designed to reduce offending.

Sergeant Allie Webster, of West Mercia Police and Warwickshire Police’s rural and business crime project, said: “Holding this conference was extremely important as rural and wildlife crime can have a devastating impact on farmers, small businesses and communities.

“Police officers and staff who were fortunate enough to attend the event on Tuesday found the conference very useful, insightful and inspiring.

“They are now even more equipped and prepared to tackle wildlife crime, as well as be there to support those who have unfortunately become victims of rural based crimes.

”Overall the conference was a great success. Delegates were fired up for the event which was both enjoyable and beneficial, as initiatives, ideas and actions discussed will be considered and delivered upon.”

Amanda Blakeman, assistant chief constable, added: "I was delighted to take part in this wildlife crime conference, which indicates our progress with how we work in partnership with farmers and rural communities.

“The alliance of Warwickshire and West Mercia makes us the largest geographically land-locked policing area in the country, with many parts being very rural, so it is only natural that we should focus on rural and wildlife crime.

“With chief officers and the police and crime commissioner’s commitment to rural crime being delivered over the coming financial years, I am confident that we can drive down such crime in our area.”