Telephone survey of Devon and Cornwall residents to explore perceptions of policing and the local area

Devon and Cornwall residents interviewed via telephone and on-street

Approximate length of survey, in minutes

Number of areas in which residents were engaged


The Devon and Cornwall Police and Crime Commissioner wished to engage a suitable research organisation to undertake its 2018 perceptions survey. Police and Crime Commissioners are elected in areas of England and Wales to make sure that local police meet the needs of the communities they serve. They are responsible for how the area is policed, the police budget, providing information about the police, and appointing and dismissing the chief constable within their area.

Enventure Research was commissioned to conduct telephone interviews with Devon and Cornwall residents to explore experiences and perceptions of living in Devon and Cornwall, particularly in respect to the police.


The perceptions survey questionnaire developed by the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner was reviewed by Enventure Research to ensure it was of suitable length and would elicit useful feedback from residents. The survey was undertaken by trained market research interviewers with residents aged 16+. Quotas were set on age, gender and location to ensure that a sample representative of the wider area was achieved.

The survey took approximately 10 minutes to administer and gathered feedback on a number of topics, including how interested and informed residents were about police activity in their local area, knowledge about the local policing team, confidence in the local police service, and satisfaction with a range of local services (including the police). Demographic information was also collected to help place respondents’ feedback into context and allow comparisons between different groups.

Interviews were carried out at different times of the day and on different days of the week, including weekends, to ensure that a wide range of individuals had the opportunity to participate. Due to the difficulty of engaging with younger residents via telephone, some interviews were carried out face-to-face on-street to balance the quotas. Regular progress reports were sent throughout the project.


During the fieldwork period, 765 telephone and face-to-face interviews were completed with individuals living in Devon and Cornwall. Following all quality control checks, the anonymised raw data was sent to the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner for internal analysis. The findings from the public perceptions survey were used to inform future planning for the police force in the Devon and Cornwall areas.

“Measuring perceptions of residents is a really important aspect for Devon and Cornwall Police, and we were pleased to be able to provide this support and deliver the Perceptions of Policing Survey. It provided some in depth evidence that Devon and Cornwall Police could drill down and examine. It was an interesting project to work on.”

Mark Robinson

Managing Director, Cornwall Council