A NEW police chief has attempted to allay concerns about policing levels in the Ramsbottom area.

Inspector Lorraine Crossman, who is replacing Bryn Williams while on sick leave, met residents for the first time in her new role at the Ramsbottom, Tottington and North Manor forum.

Insp Crossman was questioned about policing cover across Ramsbottom after fears were previously raised that there was inadequate resources in the area.

The front counter of Ramsbottom police station was closed in 2011, with residents now being directed to Bury police’s new headquarters in Dunster Road, off Castlecroft Road.

Responding to a question from Coun Luise Fitzwalter, who said that councillors and the Ramsbottom Business Group did not have a contact point for local police, Insp Crossman aimed to reassure residents.

She said: “You have probably felt the loss of Ramsbottom police station.

“And I cannot promise more resources than I have got.

“But I have rearranged officers in Bury North to make sure we cover the whole area.”

Insp Crossman was also questioned by Coun Ian Bevan whether officers based in the area were being deployed to Bury town centre at the weekends, leaving the north of Bury short on policing cover.

However, she said that this had previously been the case, when officers would be seconded to assist colleagues policing pubs and clubs. However she said that now there would be a beat officer available up until 3am.

This comes after her predecessor, Insp Williams, previously told the meeting that it was a matter that 'concerned' him, and described the town centre as a 'sponge' for policing.

After the meeting, Coun Bevan added: “Let’s hope that Greater Manchester Police keep to their promises.

“We are in a low crime area.

“And while anti-social behaviour has been on the increase, we want to ensure that we have the right policing resources in our town.”