BOLTON’S police officers will have more freedom to tackle local issues, according to the new Police and Crime Commissioner.

PCC Tony Lloyd visited Bolton yesterday to encourage people to give their views on what should be the priority for the police to help him shape his policing plan.

Mr Lloyd said that each community in Greater Manchester has its own challenges and officers need to react to that rather than having forcewide initiatives.

He added: “We don’t want to be putting handcuffs on the police.

“I am not going to be the one putting them in that position.

“We don’t want to be tying up people in red tape and want to allow people with years of experience to do their job.”

The former Labour MP for Stretford, aged 62, said that working with other organisations such as Bolton Council and Victim Support is increasingly important as the number of police officers are being cut.

He added: “It is a real challenge.

“We have lost 1,000 officers and there are another 500 set to go. Enough is enough now.

“We don’t want to turn into a service that can only respond to emergencies.“ Ch Supt David Hull said crime has fallen by 30 per cent in Bolton over the last three or four years.

It fell by nine per cent last year.

He added: “We have made considerable inroads into what the community says is important to them. All of that work takes place in a partnership context.

“Isolated working is behind us and as we move forward with the challenges facing us we have got to get better at working in partnership.”

Mr Lloyd wants people to tell him what their priorities are to shape the plan, which will be published at the end of March.

The draft plan sets out his eight policing objectives for the next four years.

Residents can read the draft priorities and respond at