Chief Constable backs new district policing team

Chief Constable George Hamilton.
Chief Constable George Hamilton.

Chief Constable George Hamilton visited the new Antrim and Newtownabbey borough recently to discuss the changes to local policing which came into effect on April 1.

Under the changes, 11 new policing districts have been created to mirror the amalgamated council areas.

Chief Const. Hamilton met with the senior policing team for the new Antrim and Newtownabbey District, which will be headed up by District Commander, Superintendent Muir Clark.

Chief Inspector Stephen Reid will continue as Area Commander for Newtownabbey.

Chief Const. Hamilton said he has every confidence in the policing team in the new district.

“We have put Muir in this position [as District Commander]; he knows the area and he is one of the most experienced Superintendents we have. I have every confidence in him,” Chief Const. Hamilton commented.

“By being here, I am showing my confidence in him and the senior team here and actually, that we really believe in the changes, which will allow better policing.”

Chief Const. Hamilton said there had been significant challenges in bringing forward the new model of local policing, particularly in relation to budget constraints.

Under the local policing reforms, there will be changes to the number of Neighbourhood Policing Teams (NPTs) across the district.

Previously, there had been separate NPTs for the Ballyclare, Glengormley, Macedon and University areas, but under the changes there will be just one Neighbourhood Policing Team in Newtownabbey.