Anti-social behaviour, speeding cars and dog fouling are the top three public complaints to Cumbria’s police and crime chief, it has been revealed.

The county’s PCC Peter McCall said the public tended to want things done about lower level nuisances.

Mr McCall said that more focus needed to be given to the “unseen policing” which ties-up police resources in complex investigations.

Child sexual exploitation, modern slavery and cyber-crime all needed to be investigated to stop them taking root, he said.

Mr McCall said the public was concerned about what they saw on their streets, rather than the crimes that never touched them.

Mr McCall said: “It would be easily to trivialise things like anti-social behaviour, speeding cars and dog fouling, but I am not. They are very important to people.”

“What absolutely worries me is that there are much more serious and pernicious crimes taking place.

"While we don’t have the same level of serious crimes like Merseyside, Manchester or the Metropolitan Police, and we don’t have the same degrees of things like knife crime, we do still have our share.”

Mr McCall said the police also had to be alert to county lines crimes where drug-runners from big cities expanded their networks into smaller areas.

He said: “The challenge for me is delivering the right resource where it needs to be. Quite reasonably, local residents ask what am I getting for it and they don’t see the unseen policing taking place.

“Most of Cumbria won’t see serious and organised crime, and that’s why we are having campaigns on the unseen policing that takes place, day in day out.

“It’s a balance between scaring people, which we don’t want to do, and making them aware that these things go on here as well.”

Police and crime panel member Judith Cooke said it was important that serious and organised crime remained a priority for the commissioner and Cumbria Police.

She said: “These are issues that police universally across the country are struggling to cope with. It’s a different collection of people, who are often quicker on their feet, in terms of using mobile phones and technology.”