New local policing teams come into force today.

Braintree district has a team of officers who will focus on local crime and problems, especially anti-social behaviour, safeguarding repeat and vulnerable victims and tackling drug and alcohol misuse.

They will work from local stations and operate on a 24/7 basis.

A domestic abuse unit will also be based in Braintree.

It follows a reshuffle to move 500 officers from central hubs to working under the direct control of local police commanders.

Essex Police Chief Constable Stephen Kavanagh said: “The development of local teams, supported by the new policing hubs, recognises the fact that communities want officers with good local knowledge who really understand their local issues.

“Police community support officers visibly patrolling their beat continues to be a key part of the policing style in Essex.”