Hare coursing and agricultural vehicle thefts are among the new rural crime priorities for Melksham’s Neighbourhood Policing Team.

Speaking at the Melksham Community Area Partnership meeting last Thursday, Sergeant James Williams set out the team’s priorities for the next three months.

Patrols will also be increased around Eden Grove, Whitley following reports of anti-social behaviour.

Sergeant Williams said: “Vehicle thefts are up, including a tractor stolen from Semington, and we’re getting hare coursing reports in Steeple Ashton.

“We will also be doing an operation in the area focusing on metal thefts.

“There have been issues in Eden Grove, including criminal damage and verbal assault. There are quite a few neighbourly disputes going on, and we’ll be conducting some joint-agency visits and regular patrols.”

In the town centre police will be focusing on beggars in the high street, and anti-social behaviour in the King George V Playing Fields.