Rory Stewart launches Operation Local, his pledge to cut crime by rebuilding London’s neighbourhood police

Rory Stewart launches Operation Local, his pledge to cut crime by rebuilding London’s neighbourhood police

3 in 4 Londoners think crime is out of control in the capital, and that it has got worse under the current mayor.

As new polling reveals the extent of Londoners’ fears about crime, the Independent candidate for Mayor, Rory Stewart, has announced “Operation Local: my pledge to cut crime by rebuilding London’s neighbourhood police”. 

The polling reveals: 

  • Three quarters of Londoners think that crime is out of control, and are more worried about crime than when Sadiq Khan became Mayor
  • Almost two-thirds of Londoners think that Sadiq Khan has not got a grip on crime
  • Over half of Londoners feel unsafe on their own street after dark, and 84% of London parents said that they “worry about [their] children being out on their own after dark”
  • Over 80% said they wanted to see more neighbourhood police, with that rising to more than 90% of over 45 year olds

Operation Local, the first part of Rory Stewart’s plan to cut crime, includes commitments to: 

  • Triple the number of neighbourhood police officers on the streets of London in his first year in office - in every single borough.
  • Triple the number of Special Constables by the end of his first term
  • Introduce a network of “surge teams” to police neighbourhood crime hotspots
  • Resign if he does not reduce violent crime in London within two years of being elected

Full details of Operati
on Local can be found at

Reflecting on the announcement, retired Detective Chief Inspector in the Metropolitan Police, Clive Driscoll, said  

“I was the Senior Investigating Officer responsible for bringing Stephen Lawrence’s killers to justice and a key part of that was focusing on local engagement - winning the trust of a family and part of the community that had lost faith in the Metropolitan Police. 

“Local officers are the bedrock of neighbourhood policing, which for too long has been stripped back to its bare bones. From community relations to intelligence gathering, having police officers who are visible on the streets and accessible to Londoners is essential to get a grip of this crime epidemic. That's why I'm proud to support Rory Stewart’s plan - which rightly puts neighbourhood policing front and centre. It’s the only form of policing that truly works in my opinion, and I believe it will have an immediate impact on reducing crime in our city.” 

Independent candidate for Mayor of London, Rory Stewart said:

“Safety, and the escalating levels of violent crime, are the number one concerns of Londoners. People don’t feel safe, and the situation is getting worse. 

“As Mayor I will grip this crisis immediately, and take action by reinstating the foundational elements of good community policing. I will triple the number of neighbourhood police officers on the street - in every single borough and ward - and I will bring back experienced former police officers to train and mentor new recruits. 

“The police do an incredible job, but too often they have been diverted to centralised task forces and specialist units, and the relationship between local police and local people is lost. I will turn this around by emphasising the value of those relationships - ensuring that every Londoner knows the name and number of their local neighbourhood team.

“This is the first part of my plan to address the unacceptable levels of crime in London that have been allowed to spiral out of control. The Mayoral Election this year can be a turning point - a vote for me is a vote for tackling this crisis head-on, with less party politics and more action.”

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