CONCERNS have been voiced that monthly meetings to allow residents to express concerns to the police could become bi-monthly.

At present the Police and Community Together (PACT) meetings in Shildon are well attended in each of the three wards within the town.

The Byerley, Thickly and Sunnydale wards each have their own PACT meeting every four weeks.

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On average around 20 people attend the meetings where they raise concerns with Shildon police and other agencies.

Durham County councillor Trish Pemberton, who covers Shildon, is worried as Durham Police is looking into cutting the meetings to six a year.

She said: “The meetings are a very important vehicle for communication between the public and the police.

“I was at a PACT meeting recently and there were 25 people there. It’s about the police and the community working together.

“I am very concerned that that if they are only every two months people will get out of the habit of going and they will not be as good.

“They are a way of fostering community spirit in Shildon.”

Fellow county councillor for Shildon, Councillor Henry Nicholson, said: “They are a successful if people go to them and the more people who go the more successful they are.”