OPERATION Avro gives the public confidence that police are stamping out crime and able to get out of special measures, the town's MP has said.

As part of Greater Manchester Police's commitment to stamping out crime, the Force executed a day-long coordinated operation across Wigan and Leigh on Thursday, July 28.

Under the codename 'Operation Avro', officers gave a visible show of strength as they executed a series of warrants, drugs busts and weapon searches.

READ > Dozens of arrests made as police 'show strength' with co-ordinated raids

Leigh Journal: Police arresting a man wanted on recall to prison on Linden GrovePolice arresting a man wanted on recall to prison on Linden Grove

They also gave informative speeches to the public, as well as carrying out night-time operations, closure orders and eviction notices on properties identified by residents.

Across the borough, more than 30 arrests and 20 warrants were executed as police attempt to stamp out crime and bring criminals to justice.

At a closure order on Lord Street, which was identified as being a hotspot for drug dealing and anti-social behaviour, Leigh MP James Grundy said that Operation Avro is an example of what the public wants to see and highlights "real progress" within GMP.

He noted that this has been a collaborative process between the police, council, politicians and volunteers.

Leigh Journal: James Grundy speaking to officers on Lord StreetJames Grundy speaking to officers on Lord Street

Mr Grundy said: "It is very important that we are tackling the issues that have been a curse on the centre of Leigh for a long time, and we are finally dealing with the issues that matter most to ordinary local people.

"The police are putting real resources into tackling drug dealing and anti-social behaviour and I am absolutely backing the way they are tackling it.

"It gives a message to drug dealers and the other people making our lives a misery in Leigh that they are not going to get away with it."

Leigh Journal: Chief Superintendent Emily Higham on Thursday's Operation AvroChief Superintendent Emily Higham on Thursday's Operation Avro

Greater Manchester Police was placed in special measures in December 2020 after a watchdog report revealed that an estimated 80,000 crimes had not been properly recorded.

As the Force remains in special measures, Operation Avro is a coordinated way to increase the number of arrests, act on public intelligence, and increase confidence back into the police.

Despite the difficulties of being placed into such measures, Mr Grundy said that places like Leigh are "now seeing the fruits" of the Force's improvements.

Leigh Journal: James Grundy expressed his confidence in GMP getting out of special measuresJames Grundy expressed his confidence in GMP getting out of special measures

He added: "We could not carry on with the way we were with Greater Manchester Police a couple of years ago, as there were quite clearly failings within the Force.

"But we are now seeing the fruits of being placed into special measures, whereby things are being dealt with the way the public expects them to be dealt with.

"I give the police due credit to the changes they have made in the last 12 months [...] and I fully expect them to come out of special measures in due course."

Mr Grundy also expressed his desire for Leigh Police Station and cells to be re-opened to ease the process of taking criminals off the streets, but accepted this would involve more funding from central government.

Leigh Journal: James Grundy wants to see Leigh Police Station opened full timeJames Grundy wants to see Leigh Police Station opened full time