A teenage boy has been arrested in connection with the theft of a tractor and subsequent dangerous driving near Dorchester.

Dorset Police is appealing for information after its officers responded to the report of a yellow JCB Fastrac tractor with a trailer having been stolen from the Martinstown area.

Police received the report at 11:41p.m yesterday (Sunday, May 26) that the tractor and trailer had been stolen and officers were deployed to the area.

The vehicle was subsequently seen driving on the A37 north of Dorchester before travelling on a number of rural roads in the Dorchester and Piddle Valley area.

It was reported that the vehicle failed to stop for police on several occasions and continued travelling along roads in the Dorchester area overnight.

It was subsequently stopped in the area of Bradford Peverell at around 7:45a.m this morning (Monday, May 27) and a teenage boy was arrested in connection with the incident.

Supt Gavin House of Dorset Police, said: “Officers responded swiftly to this incident and worked overnight to ensure any reported risks to other road users were minimised and the incident was brought to a safe conclusion.

“We are carrying out a full investigation into this matter and I would appeal to any witnesses to the manner of driving of this tractor, and particularly anyone who has captured relevant dashcam footage, to please contact Dorset Police.”

Rural crime

A new rural crime partnership, funded by £156,000, is aiming to protect the fields and farms of rural Oxfordshire.

The partnership consists of Thames Valley Police, West Oxfordshire, South Oxfordshire, Vale of the White Horse District Councils and the Community Safety Partnerships to tackle crimes such as fly-tipping, burglaries and theft in rural areas. 

There will also be more support for local communities on crime prevention as well an increase in the gathering and sharing of information about rural crime. 

The £156,000 in funding has been secured from the police and crime commissioner for Thames Valley and the Home Office’s Safer Streets initiative.

West Oxfordshire district councillor, Geoff Saul, said: “By working together, we can make a difference in protecting our farms, homes, and natural landscape from rural crime. 

“As a council we know only too well that fly-tipping creates an environmental problem that blights rural communities, and I welcome the funding to help to tackle this anti-social crime.”