Lancashire Constabulary has a new addition to its fleet, with the introduction of its first liveried ‘Police with Pride’ immediate response car.

The car, which will be fully operational, will be based in the county’s west division at Blackpool and used 24/7 by the immediate response team. The aim of the car is to engage with the gay, lesbian, bisexual and trans community to raise awareness of hate crime and domestic abuse and to encourage more people to report incidents. It will also attend various Pride events around the region throughout the year.

The launch of the new car also coincides with the celebration of 2017 being the 50th anniversary since the decriminalisation of homosexuality. Historically the police have been seen negatively due to their role in enforcing historic legislation which no longer exists.

Deputy Chief Constable Andy Rhodes said: “Lancashire has a diverse community and as such it’s important for us to understand the differing needs and support those differing requirements. We are committed to equality and valuing difference and supporting the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual and Trans people. By having a car that has a bold statement is just one way of demonstrating that commitment to the LGBT community.”

Police and Crime Commissioner Clive Grunshaw added: “As Police and Crime Commissioner I am always looking for ways to demonstrate that the police are aware of their local communities and keen to reflect them in everything they do. This car is just one aspect of that and again this year the Constabulary and my office will be supporting Blackpool Pride and encouraging the LGB&T community to work with us to end hate crime.”