A CITY police team is embracing modern detective techniques by setting up its own Facebook page.

The Durham City neighbourhood policing team’s group on the popular social networking site will feature news stories, events, appeals for information, updates on neighbourhood issues and the results of police operations.

Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs) and community volunteers will contribute to the page, which it is hoped will also produce potentially key information on crime in city communities.

Neighbourhood Inspector Paul Anderson said: "All members of our communities now use social networking sites. Therefore this is an ideal opportunity for the police to increase accessibility and engage with more people.

"The information provided will be local to the Durham City area. Hopefully everyone will find it interesting and provide some feedback on what’s happening in their neighbourhood.

"As a result of a request for volunteers, we now have someone who manages the site on behalf of our police teams, which saves officers having to sit at the computer inputting information, allowing them to be on patrol.

"I would invite anyone interested in Facebook to sign up as members to the Durham City neighbourhood police team - ask your family and friends to join and please let us know what you think."

The Facebook page currently features information on an under-18s disco, a video from raids carried out under Operation Nimrod and a news story about dog handler PC Dave Robinson, who was praised for his bravery and quick thinking after he stopped a man jumping from a bridge over the A1(M) at Carrville, near Durham.

Details of community meetings and ways to contact the police are also included.

The group has already won 114 "Facebook fans".

Insp Anderson said he would be monitoring the success of the page with a view to using other social media, such as MySpace and Twitter.

To view the page, visit facebook.com and search for Durham City Neighbourhood Police Team.

Police in Bishop Auckland and Spennymoor have already created their own pages on the website.

To report a crime, call Durham Police on 0345-60-60-365 or, if it is urgent, call 999.