A double-track approach to addressing anti-social behaviour in Swindon town centre will see more police officers patrolling the streets.

Swindon Borough Council will in turn have more officers devoted to the issue, who will be working closely with the police and the town centre safety wardens.

The two new officers are Constables Thapa and Barreto, who have joined existing officers PC Bezzant, PCSO Jefferies and PCSO Sims to show an extra presence in the town centre.

PC Barreto said: “It’s important that people see us in the town centre. I will give people extra reassurance that we are here, and that we can help people with any issues they face.

“We want to give people who come into town, and businesses confidence that we will help them and give them confidence.”

He added: “It’s paramount that we work with partner agencies like the council, we can only make a real difference by working together.

The council has appointed Emma Phillips as a new anti-social behaviour officer, with Lara James-Williams learning the ropes as an apprentice and both are joining Dean Tillings who has been in the ASB team for eight months.

Mr Tilling said: “The police have the powers to deal with criminal behaviour, but we have powers as well, we can make an injunction, so we can put down public space protection orders if we need to.”

Ms Phillips said: “We will be working longer-term than the police might as well. We don’t want people to be criminalised if that’s not needed, we want to educate people, persuade them to change their behaviour before the need for police involvement.”

Ms Phillips added that members of the team would be going to schools, either with the police or separately, and working with youth groups, clubs and charities to help especially young people keep out of trouble.

Councillor Jim Grant is Swindon Borough Council’s cabinet member for partnerships and joint working. He said: “Give the resources, or perhaps the lack of resources the council and the police have, it's incredibly important that we work together.

“We know people want anti-social behaviour in the town centre sorted out, and it’s only by working together we can deliver what the people of Swindon want.

“We want people to feel safe coming into town, making it a better experience, and that will help revitalise the businesses, and encourage more people to come to the town centre who might have been put off."