Opinion Former Article

Training days aid Wildlife Crime Officers’ countryside knowledge

More than 60 Wildlife Crime Officers (WCOs) have taken part in two COVID-secure-training days with BASC and the National Gamekeepers Organisation (NGO) to bolster their understanding of wildlife management law and its practical application.

The training days were put on free of charge to provide the officers with an overview of several subjects they are likely to encounter.

Training focused on legislation, deer management, pest control and trapping. A further session also featured on rural crime including deer and hare poaching.

WCOs in attendance came from Lancashire, Cheshire, Merseyside, British Transport Police, Greater Manchester Police and North Wales Police.

Duncan Thomas, BASC North director, said: “The legislation surrounding wildlife management is incredibly complex. It is essential that these officers have a full understanding of wildlife management and the law.

“Gamekeepers are the guardians of the countryside and these training days are just a small part of our work with the WCOs.”

Senior Officer Chief Inspector Chris Hardy said: “We are very grateful to BASC and the NGO for the continued support and wish to build on existing partnerships. The expertise of the trainers was invaluable in developing the officers knowledge to continue to effectively combat Rural and Wildlife Crime.”

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