Bedfordshire Police and members of the local community carried out a weapons sweep in Kempston this weekend and found two knives that will now be destroyed.
They focussed mainly on Addison Howard Park looking for possible weapons that had either been discarded or hidden for future use.
Volunteers found a large kitchen knife hidden under leaves and a Stanley Knife discarded in undergrowth.
The community weapons sweep was to highlight Operation Sceptre, a week of action which aims to tackle a national increase in knife crime and starts today.
Sergeant Ben Dimmock, who is leading the operation, said: “We know that people hide their knives so that if they are stopped and searched, they are not found in possession of a weapon.
“That’s why weapons sweeps are so important – we are removing knives that have potentially been hidden for future use, and taking them out of circulation so they now can’t be used.
“This is the second set of community weapons sweeps we have run, and I was extremely pleased to see so many people come and join us to help tackle knife crime.
“Knife crime is not just a police issue, and the support of the community is vital. We removed eight knives from two areas, and have taken these dangerous weapons off our streets.
“We know that knife crime has risen in Bedfordshire, and we will continue to work to tackle this.
“I hope that our presence over the weekend sends a strong message that nobody – neither the police or the community – will tolerate knife crime or the use of weapons, and we’ll work together to tackle it.
“There is no place in our community for the use of weapons.”
Bedfordshire Police say they’ve a number of activities planned across the county to support Operation Sceptre, including speaking to retailers and community members and carrying our targeted patrols in hotspot areas.
Anyone with any information about knife crime, including about anyone carrying a knife, is urged to call 101 or report it online via www.bedfordshire.police.uk/report.
You can also call the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.
The same group also carried out a sweep in Hockwell Ring, Luton and found six knives in a range of sizes near the community centre.