STREET pastors and improved CCTV could be introduced after a report found there was a lack of confidence in policing across Maldon and the Dengie.

Maldon District Council will discuss suggestions a lack of visible policing in the district is undermining the feeling of public safety.

As part of a report, due to go before the audit committee, the council has outlined plans to help combat issues.

CCTV in Maldon and Burnham town centres is set to be upgraded, and a group will be introduced to monitor the images live.

A feasibility study on the introduction of street pastors in Maldon is being carried out.

A number of public engagement events are also planned across the district with parish councils, faith groups and schools.

The report comes just months after Maldon’s police station moved to the council offices in Princes Road.

It said: “Even with the close working partnership between the council and Essex Police, and the significant work that is being undertaken, the public confidence in the police and the perception of crime may be something that needs to be addressed.”

Maldon district councillor Mark Heard said he shared some concerns about the lack of visible policing. He said: “I long for the day when you see a uniformed police officer walking down the High Street again.

“I have always said that moving the police station to the current location is a bad deal for the people of Maldon. The Police and Crime Commissioner’s first objective is to be more accessible and more visible and I really do not think that is happening.”

An Essex Police spokesman said: “We work in close partnership every day with the council to keep Maldon safe, but we know that people would like to see more visible officers on patrol. We would too but the crimes that have increased across Essex are those where violence and emergencies are involved. We think the public understand that’s what we need to respond to and investigate first.”