Derbyshire Police is set to get new off-road bikes to help them tackle “rural problems” like machinery theft, trespassing and poaching.

The new off-road motorcycles are unmarked, but are fitted with lights and sirens. They will also be available across Derbyshire to prevent antisocial use of motorbikes across local parks, nature reserves and trails.

The force said over ten priority areas have been highlighted – which have been reported by both members of the public and local Derbyshire policing teams – which will be targeted within Derbyshire.

The aim of the bikes is to allow officers to “easily approach and challenge anyone found riding off-road”, the force said, resulting in more illegal bikes being seized and more “antisocial behaviour being prevented”.

Police and crime commissioner Angelique Foster said: “These off-road bikes will help Derbyshire Constabulary’s police officers to tackle a raft of crimes which blight our neighbourhoods.

“They will play an important role in the work to tackle the antisocial and criminal use of motorcycles, as well as a range of rural problems such as machinery theft, trespass and poaching. 

“It’s important that police officers are provided with the right equipment and training to tackle the changing nature of crime and antisocial behaviour and I am pleased to see my investment being used to address problems that are of concern to local communities.”

Illegal riding

Councillor Matthew Eyre said illegal riding and antisocial behaviour is a “nuisance issue”, but also puts road and pavement users at risk and has the “potential to cause significant harm to the public”.

Image: Derbyshire Police

“We remain absolutely committed to our on-going efforts to tackle neighbourhood crime and anti-social behaviour issues across Derby, which includes illegal riding,” he said.

“The scrambler bikes are a great addition for our local policing teams to help tackle nuisance riding, and I am proud that Derby City Council’s Home Office Safer Streets Fund has contributed to this by funding a forth bike, so our local policing teams can deploy the bikes in pairs across Derby.”

Sgt. in the roads policing unit, Adam Titterton, said the force has seen a rise in the number of reports about the illegal use of motorbikes in Derbyshire.

“Over the last few months, we’ve been working hard behind the scenes to source scrambler bikes such as these, so that we have the tools to better target this antisocial behaviour,” he said.

“We’re looking forward to getting out and speaking to people, so that we can prevent further anti-social behaviour and better educate the illegal riders in the law and how to legally use off-road bikes.”