All households in England and Wales are to receive a mobile phone number and email address to contact local police teams. It's part of a new plan to bring police forces closer to the public.

The new £325 million-per-year initiative, due to begin in April, will also involve police chiefs holding regular public meetings in their local areas, the Press Association reports.

Each council ward is to have its own local policing team, which will include police and community support officers.

Accessible police service

"We know people want more say about their community and a visible and accessible police service that deals with local problems and anti-social behaviour," said Prime Minister Gordon Brown in a statement.

"Whilst crime is falling, too many people have a real fear about their communities and feel detached from their police service.

"Neighbourhood policing is about giving local people power over how their streets are policed. It is a major step towards a new kind of policing, one in which the citizen has real influence,” the PM said.

The system is currently being tested in the London Borough of Lambeth. Since the pilot trial began, Lambeth has seen a 9.9 per cent overall reduction in crime, according to chief inspector Patrick Beynon.