Town centre patrols will be focusing on Bideford town centre in the run up to Christmas to ensure public safety.

POLICE and parking enforcement officers will be working together during the festive season to increase public safety.

Joint patrols will be working around Bideford town centre, paying particular attention to Bridgeland Street.

Officers said they are concerned that parking on both sides of the road can delay emergency vehicles and cause them to park in the middle of the road.

It also causes congestion, can block CCTV camera views, and leave little room for drivers to take evasive action to avoid pedestrians.

Business owners in Bridgeland Street have received letters reminding them of the parking restrictions in the run up to Christmas.

Sergeant Paul McWhinnie, Bideford police neighbourhood team leader, said: “Some drivers think that they can get away with flouting the rules when enforcement officers are not on duty and this is clearly not acceptable.

“I am really pleased to be working in partnership with the parking enforcement officers on this because of the need to maintain public safety, particularly at this time of year when many people will drink more than they perhaps normally would and there is a greater need to increase public safety measures to ensure the wellbeing of the community.”