ANDOVER town rangers have increased their patrol hours and days in the town centre.

This service extension, which started on Monday, July 1, aims to improve security and comes as a response to feedback from businesses concerned about safety and crime.

Together with Venture Security, Andover BID applied for and secured a grant from the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Police Crime Commissioner (PCC) and the Home Office's Antisocial Behaviour Fund.

This funding is targeted to assist local communities determined to improve safety.

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The rangers have increased their hours (Image: Supplied) With this financial support, the BID aims to bolster patrols throughout the town centre for the rest of 2024/25.

Working alongside Test Valley Borough Council, the PCC, and the police, Andover BID insists these additional resources will 'assist in battling anti-social behaviour and reducing losses endured by local businesses due to shoplifting'.

Shelley Coburn, Andover BID manager, said: "Businesses have identified safety and anti-crime activities as their number one priority. It is good to be acting on their feedback by providing more ranger cover. This change shows our commitment to supporting local businesses and ensuring a safer environment for everyone."

Sports Direct assistant manager, Louis Hatch, said: "Having the town rangers available seven days a week is crucial for our business community. It gives us peace of mind knowing there is always someone around to help maintain security and promptly address any issues."

Resident, Sarah-Jane Grace, added: "It's really good to know that the town is being looked after every day. Feeling safe when I go out makes a big difference, and I appreciate the efforts to keep our community safe."