LANCASHIRE bobbies were among hundreds of police staff reported for breaching social media guidelines in the last five years, a new report has revealed.

One officer quit the county force over colleagues’ ‘excessive and inapprop-riate use of the internet during working hours’, in particular the use of online auction sites, internet banking and social networking sites.

A Lancashire police worker received counselling after an investigation into a photo posted on Facebook which showed them asleep in the control room during a shift.

Another employee recei-ved a written warning after posting derogatory remarks online about a PCSO who had issued them with a fine for dog fouling.

A PC received manage-ment action after it was alleged he or she made inappropriate remarks on Facebook regarding someone's wife.

The report, by the Press Association, said that a total of 828 cases have been reported to police bosses across England and Wales between January 2009 and February 2014.

One in seven of all investigations resulted in no further action, compared with around a tenth of cases ending in a resignation, dismissal or retirement.

A Lancashire police spokesman said: “Lanca-shire police staff and officers are expected to behave professionally, ethically and with the utmost integrity at all times.

“Any allegations of inappropriate behaviour, including that on social media or internet sites whether on or off duty, will be investigated thoroughly and dealt with appropriately.”

Greater Manchester police, whose patch includes Ramsbottom, reported the most investigations with 88, followed by West Midlands with 74 and the Met with 69.

Various forces also said there were investigations into comments that were deemed homophobic, racist or ‘religiously aggressive’.