WILTSHIRE Police have vowed to crackdown on hate crimes following a Channel 4 documentary which revealed a particularly repugnant side of Swindon.

999: What’s Your Emergency?, which aired on Monday night, took a close look at hate crimes and racially-aggravated assaults in Swindon and Wiltshire and suggested that the UK’s decision to leave the European Union last June was partly to blame for the increase.

The programme’s focus was on hate crimes “in a time of unprecedented change”.

The narrator said: “In the wake of the Brexit vote, racially aggravated offences in Wiltshire rose by almost 40 per cent.”

Newly released figures show that the force received 269 reports of hate crimes in 2013, compared with 530 last year.

One man, Cameron Mackay, admitted sending racist text messages to a young couple he barely even knew. When the police asked him if he were racist, Mackay replied: “No, my dog is black.”

He said he sent the messages for “Friday night entertainment”.

Another Swindon man featured on the programme was accused by neighbours of masturbating in his garden. When police turned up at his house, the man, originally from Brazil, claimed that he had been subject to a number of racial slurs in recent months.

He said: “Before Brexit, everybody is extremely polite. Now the relationship between people is getting much more difficult, even more so if you are a foreigner.

“Swindon is a very nice place to start: rents are affordable and there is a nice Brazilian community here. But it’s time to move abroad. It’s time to leave. Unfortunately we are definitely not welcome here.”

In response, Chief Constable Mike Veale spoke of his pride at seeing the force in action.

He said: “Like more than a million people on Monday night, I was really looking forward to Wiltshire having a chance to shine and for the nation to see how a small force like ours is coping with the changing policing landscape.

“It’s really important to me that the public get to see how the challenges facing the police services across the country in 2017 are very different to those we faced just 10 years ago.

“The programme focussed on hate crime – it’s a subject which sadly is more prevalent than it has been in recent years.

“Let me be clear, we will not tolerate hate of any kind here in Wiltshire.

“The programme, which I know has instigated a vast amount of conversation on social media, was an opportunity for us to show how hate crime can take many different forms and that whatever it may be, we will take these reports seriously.

"If you’ve experienced hate crime, call police on 101.”