CRIME in Bideford town centre has dropped by 20 per cent according to the latest figures. The town saw 213 recorded crimes between July 1 and October 1, 2011, compared to just 170 recorded during the same time period this year. Paul Searle, Acting Sector Inspector for Torridge and West Devon, said he believed a greater police presence had contributed to the fall in crime. He said: I know people have been worried about cuts meaning less police on the streets, but weve worked on providing increased visibility and concentration of staff in the town centres on a Friday and Saturday night. We also work very closely with licensees and have a good relationship with the Security Industry Authority (SIA) door staff in the town. Its great news the number of reported crimes have dropped in the town. At Bideford Town Council meeting on Thursday PC John Wright, from the Bideford neighbourhood beat team, told members crime had dropped by 2.3 per cent in Devon and Cornwall in the last six months.