A TOWN has voted through a motion of no confidence in leading Sussex Police figures.

Crowborough residents passed a vote of no confidence in chief constable Giles York and police and crime commissioner Katy Bourne during their annual town meeting.

Town councillors are angry that the force has rejected an offer by the local authority to pay for a PCSO to be stationed in Crowborough.

Sussex Police bosses said the new deployment of PCSOs from July would mean resources would be focussed on the "vulnerable" rather than "randomly patrol" neighbourhoods to little effect.

Councillor David Larkin told The Argus of fears of rising crime as local policing is scaled back.

He said the town would be better off under the Kent force which still allows local authorities to pay for PCSOs.

The Wealden area will be served by 12 PCSOs under new staffing arrangements and cllr Larkin warned officers on shift could still be called away to Hastings, Eastbourne or Brighton leaving Crowborough low on the policing priority.

The councillor said that the area had already seen a rise in crimes including a knifepoint robbery of the local newsagent and repeated vandalism of the town’s miniature railway.

Cllr Larkin said: “We have had very good PCSOs over a number of years, they have been around, they know who the troublemakers are, they know where people hide their booze, and they keep a tight leash on all that nonsense.

“The town council has money in the precept to pay for a PCSOs but the police have said ‘the money is no good to us because you might change your mind next year’.

“We find that really insulting."

Assistant Chief Constable Laurence Taylor said: "Far from losing a policing presence, the local community will have PCSOs with enhanced skills and powers forming part of a wider prevention team.

"They will focus on those who are vulnerable and tackle local concerns rather than randomly patrol which is known to have little impact on crime.

"Being part of the prevention team means that instead of relying on a dedicated PCSO, communities with a specific issue could have a whole team of PCSOs from the district, division or even the force come to them to help tackle their local problem.

"I understand concerns when changes are made but communities can be assured that police will always be there when needed and will very much retain a presence in the area."