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Last Updated: Sunday, 5 February 2006, 14:59 GMT
Force in major recruitment drive
Almost 450 extra community officers are being drafted in to help Lancashire Police in their fight against crime.

The force has announced the major recruitment drive after receiving funding from the Home Office.

More than 100 police community support officers (PCSO) will be appointed this year, with a further 334 in 2007-08.

Lancashire Police said that some of the new community officer posts would be part-funded by local authorities across the county.

'Important role'

They are also planning to recruit more special constables, trained volunteers who work with and support their local police force.

The force said that its existing PCSOs were highly regarded for the "valuable and varied role they play in local communities".

The work includes tackling anti-social behaviour and preventing crime, in addition to teaching children about road safety and working with local groups to solve community problems.

Ch Insp Bill McMahon, who is leading the PCSO recruitment drive, said: "Our community support officers should not be seen as alternatives to regular constables. They have an important role to play in their own right."

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