POLICE chiefs are set to meet with people living in Irvine's Fullarton area later this week amid concern over cops' responses to anti-social behaviour.

As reported by the Times earlier this month, it comes after a shock survey by the Scottish Police Authority showed almost half of residents lacked confidence in officers' capacity to tackle anti-social behaviour.

Now an event has been organised to look at ways in which confidence in the police can be improved in the area.

The SPA and Police Scotland will be hosting a community policing event to discuss the findings from the survey and how confidence in the police might be improved.

It will take place at the Fullarton Community Hub from 12 noon until 2.30pm on Thursday, May 25.

It will be open to residents, community groups and others who regularly visit the area.

The Scottish Police Authority (SPA) study discovered 46 per cent of those surveyed said cops were doing a 'somewhat poor' or 'very poor' job dealing with the issue.

In the study, carried out between February and March this year, locals highlighted 'distressing' anti social behaviour by young people at the beach park or shopping centre, as well as drug-related crime.

Just 24 per cent of those who took part in the study felt the police were doing a 'very good' or 'somewhat good' job tackling anti social behaviour in the area.

Another 28 per cent stated that officers were 'doing a neither good nor poor job' on the issue.

The report on the SPA study's findings revealed: "Anti-social behaviour was a notable theme, with respondents highlighting they felt it has increased recently.

"Young people in local areas like the mall or the beach were noted to be causing distress to respondents, with inaction impacting confidence.

"Many respondents noted that there are perceived high levels of drug-related crime and drug dealing in the area, which they felt impacted confidence.

"In addition, a lack of visible response/justice, impacting confidence, was a theme in some responses.

"Some respondents felt as though they had not seen an appropriate police response to the reports of crime they had submitted.

"Numerous responses picked up on the idea that having no visible presence or a lack of visibility in the community can impact confidence levels.

"Some respondents also identified that confidence can be impacted by having a negative experience with the service as a user."

The SPA also spoke to young people in the area about the same issues.

Their report revealed: "Pupils in Irvine Fullarton had a generally positive view of the police, with responses identifying that the police are there to “keep you safe” and to help the community.

"A greater level of police focus on addressing drug use, drug crime, and vaping in area was suggested by many respondents.

"Tackling anti-social behaviour (including speeding, littering, and graffiti), targeted police presence in the mall and beach, and building better relationships with young people are issues that matter to pupils."

The Fullarton study forms part of research the SPA and Police Scotland are carrying out in various locations across Scotland.

At the Irvine event, they will discuss the findings from recent surveys in Fullarton and it is hoped that through a conversation between the community and the police, a better understanding of issues and potential ways to tackle these can be put into action by the police and local partners.