This is my first article as your district commander and while I’m not a natural writer, I’m grateful for this opportunity to share with you what we are doing to help keep your community safe and to discuss what matters to you.

Having now worked with Essex Police for just over three months, I have my feet firmly under the table.

Or on some early mornings I have my running feet firmly on the promenade as I plod to a better fitness level.

Should anyone wish to join me on a slow run then do get in touch – we could share ideas and even help you train for joining Essex Police if you fancy a career change.

I have met with wonderful, enthusiastic people and look forward to continue working together to build on the already excellent work being done.

Working with our town centre teams, you will see a more visible policing presence at the Saturday Manningtree market, train station and Harwich town centre.

But please don’t forget that so much valuable policing goes on behind closed doors. Hate crime and domestic abuse are sometimes well hidden so we are working tirelessly to help support victims.

Do speak with my officers and together we can really act upon what is important to you.

I will be writing a monthly briefing for councillors, Neighbourhood Watch co-ordinators, local authorities, faith leaders and residents’ associations, which will include details on what we are doing to tackle issues raised by residents.

Having met with Neighbourhood Watch liaison officersDave and Colin, I can see they are very committed to developing the Neighbourhood Watch’s work and we will be helping them get a short survey out to residents in the next few months.

Please do help them by completing this when it arrives.

There are so many more people I have met and have yet to meet, but are too numerous to mention.

And with 60km of coastline and my personal love of sailing, I hope to meet more of the Tendring sailing community over the coming months – on land not water as I am (probably shamefully or sensibly) a fair weather sailor.

Marine crime and rural crime are two areas also of focus for me but these I will leave for another article.

I look forward to meeting you, speaking with you, supporting you and possibly running with you.

Stay safe.

You can contact me by emailing or find me on Twitter by searching @CInspLilyBenbow.

To report crime, call 101.

Find out about what we’re doing in your area and details of our Coffee with Cops meetings on Facebook bysearch for Essex Police – Tendring