POLICE have not moved out of the Amman Valley, says Carmarthenshire’s Divisional Commander, Superintendent Craig Templeton.

The announcement comes after Ammanford police came under fire after it was reported that they had removed their equipment and moved out of their base at Ysgol y Bedol, Garnant (Police pull out of valley school base - Guardian, January 15).

Carmarthenshire County Council Chairman and Garnant county councillor Kevin Madge, has accused the force of “no longer prioritising community policing in the area”.

He added: “Crime figures in the past have proved that having a base in the community is beneficial and that it does work, why pull it away?

“When the police first started using the room senior officers from London came to visit and said the facility was one of the best they had seen and that it was best practice. I cannot understand why they would take it away.”

However Superintendent Templeton has said while he understands that there may have been some frustration and confusion around the room facility at Ysgol y Bedol, it does remain a community room that the police will still use for local surgeries.

Supt Templeton said: “We have taken away the IT equipment because due to modern technology we no longer require the room as a base at the school.

“We would, however, like to reassure residents that officers are still going to be spending a lot of time in the community and will still be patrolling the area and police surgeries will continue to take place.

“Dyfed-Powys Police is undergoing a reshaping of policing - but for the better, we are keen to get the opinions of the public and will happily take guidance and advice from anyone in the community.

“The area still remains a safe and secure place to live and nothing has changed in terms of reduction in service and we have not withdrawn from the community, in fact we have more staff out and about instead of being in an office.

“If anyone would like to speak with us about their concerns we are always approachable and available to discuss these with you.”

The next Police and Communities Together Meeting at Ysgol y Bedol will go ahead as usual on Wednesday, February 5.