REDUCING rural crime and cracking down on boy racers who gather in car parks will be the main priorities for Lyme Regis police this year.

Lyme Regis Safer Neighbourhood Team (SNT) has released its list of priorities for the new year following a number complaints from members of the public.

The main two causes of the complaints the SNT has received have been an increase in thefts and burglaries from rural locations, and groups of boy racers who congregate in local car parks during the night.

PC Kirsti Ball, head of the Lyme Regis Safer Neighbourhood Team, said: “The anti-social behaviour of cars gathering comes in fits and starts, and it is now picking up again.

“What usually happens is that boy racers congregate in their cars at car parks, such as the Holmbush Car Park, and because there is such a lot of them, the noise they make, whether it be from playing music, shouting or talking and the noise from their exhausts on their cars, carries to the nearby houses.

“We will be coming down on them by stepping up the patrols.

“We have got a noise monitoring system for the exhausts to check the noise they make is within the legal limit, and if they are above we will deal with them.”

The team, which also covers Charmouth, Thorncombe and Marshwood, will increase patrols to try and reduce alcohol-fuelled anti-social behaviour in the town.

Anti-social driving in and around Lyme Regis and its residential estates will be targeted by officers, following multiple complaints from concerned residents about motorists speeding through estates when children are nearby.

They will work closely with neighbouring forces and increase high visibility patrols in vulnerable rural areas to try and deter thieves from stealing in countryside locations.

Police will visit victims of crime to provide security advice and increase awareness of crime in the area, and will talk to members of the public to inform them of the steps they can take to reduce the risk of becoming a victim of crime.

PC Ball added: “We will be stepping up patrols in the more rural areas and also visiting people in their homes to advise them on security measures they can take.”