HATE crime across the county rose in May this year with 83 incidents occurring during the month across Wiltshire and Swindon.

The spike in hate crime took place in May, with 83 offences investigated and a total of 609 investigated between June 2017 and 2018.

During the Police and Crime Panel meeting held this morning in Trowbridge, councillor Brian Mathew questioned whether the force felt that the spike was connected to Brexit and asked what Wiltshire Police was doing in preparation for Brexit.

Police Crime Commissioner Angus Macpherson said: “We have a hate crime group looking into this, but there were no concerns about the actual reason for the spike. There were a couple of repeat victims but there were no identifiable features.”

Ryan Hartley from the PCC office said: “Preparations are being done for Brexit, these conversations are certainly happening."

There has also been a drop in victim satisfaction levels, showing a six-year low in satisfaction from victims who had been through the criminal justice system.

Challenging the PCC on these figures, cllr Jonathon Seed said: “Victim satisfaction is falling, what we are looking at is a six year low in victim satisfaction. If you don’t know why then surely given that trend being a problem you need to start working to find out why. If it continues to fall at this rate it will become significant."

Mr Macpherson said: “There has been a significant decline in the whole experience but this with the whole criminal justice system. I find it very difficult to identify which part of it is connected to their dissatisfaction. It could be related to probation, the courts or the police.”