Police in Wiltshire have said they have ‘robust’ plans for Brexit - especially a ‘no deal’ scenario – which some feel could cause unrest if food and medicines become scarce.

It comes days after the force refused to tell the Adver of any plans in response to a Freedom of Information request asking the police to describe their planning and state of readiness.

Now the county force says it has thorough plans ready.

Assistant Chief Constable Gavin Williams said: “We, like other forces and agencies across the UK, have been planning our local response to Brexit for a significant period of time. Our robust plans are continually monitored and developed based on what is happening nationally.

“The very nature of policing has an element of reactivity but we are confident that the plans we are constantly developing with partner agencies will stand us in good stead for any eventuality.

“We are holding regular, multi-agency meetings involving key local partners to discuss all potential issues which may arise in our county as a result of governmental decisions. These partner agencies include local authorities, health, Environment Agency and other blue light services. This is in addition to the regular communication we have centrally through the National Police Chief’s Council.

“We have well established relationships within our Local Resilience Forum and with regional and national partners to ensure a comprehensive, joint response to any major incident or event.

“We are well-versed with our major incident plans and civil contingency responsibilities. It is important to stress that, although Wiltshire does not have a history of large scale protest or disorder, we are preparing for all eventualities.

“We continue to build on the solid relationships we have at a local, regional and national level with all partners to ensure the safety of our communities.”

The official originally given to the Adver acknowledged that while publicising the plans could inform the public, and that people might even have a right to know, but came down on the side of secrecy on a number of grounds.

Chief among them was national security: allowing press to publish the state of planning could, the police said, show terrorists and criminals which police areas were more vulnerable, and enable them to plan attacks with more deadly intent.

The UK is due to leave the EU on March 29.