West Dunbartonshire will gain a share of a new £325,000 fund to be spent in communities by local police commanders.

Police Scotland’s newly instigated Local Partnership and Initiative Fund is to be spent on community empowerment, inclusion and collaborative working.

Argyll and West Dunbartonshire division will receive £20,023 from the fund.

It follows a commitment by Chief Constable Iain Livingstone to provide divisional commanders with discretionary funds and falls under the wider Local Policing Programme.

Will Kerr, deputy chief constable for local policing, welcomed the cash boost, saying it would benefit local communities.

He said: “Local commanders and officers know their communities and partners, whether they are in local authorities, health, social work, the third or private sectors, best.

“Our Local Policing Programme will ensure that policing in Scotland is delivered with a focus on communities and reflects the different needs of urban, rural, island and remote communities access across Scotland.

“This is an important recognition of divisional commanders’ autonomy to support activities and initiatives which they identify as able to improve the safety and wellbeing of their community.”

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Chief Superintendent John Paterson, who is the divisional commander for Argyll and West Dunbartonshire, also praised the scheme.

He added: “The Local Partnership and Initiative Fund will help us support local prevention-based activities that enhance the safety and wellbeing of communities.

“Over the coming weeks we will work with our partners including local authorities, health and social care to identify ways to invest this additional money in order to make a positive and lasting difference.”