Police in Bolton say they want to "assure" retailers that they are constantly striving to reduce incidents of shoplifting.

This comes after a spokesman from the Co-op in Winter Hey Lane, Horwich, said there had seen a spike in shoplifting over lockdown due to people being "bored".

They also felt the police were not doing enough to help the store combat this, despite them having lots of CCTV evidence of each individual case.

District Superintendent Rick Jackson, of GMP’s Bolton District responded, saying: "I want to assure retailers that we are constantly striving to reduce incidents of shoplifting within our community to ensure the public and help shop workers feel safe.

"When faced with such current high levels of demand, we have to make an assessment on how best to respond to reports based on the threat, risk and harm posed to the public.

"The report is then assessed and depending on its severity, officers could be deployed immediately, later the same day or the incident may be able to be resolved over the phone without having to send someone out.

"Inevitably, we have to make difficult decisions when prioritising calls to provide the right service to those who need it most.

"We will continue to work with stakeholders and partners in an effort to reduce shoplifting offences in order to provide a safer environment for both staff and customers.

"It's also important that retailers are aware of the necessary steps to protect their shop or store from shoplifters."

For more information on how to ensure a shop is secure, visit www.gmp.police.uk/cp/crime-prevention/shoplifting/how-secure-is-your-shop.