A TOP police officer has reassured East Renfrewshire residents that services will remain available when resources are diverted to the COP26 climate conference.

World leaders will arrive in Glasgow for the major United Nations event, which runs for two weeks from October 31, requiring a large Police Scotland presence.

Chief Superintendent Mark Sutherland, divisional commander for Greater Glasgow, which includes East Renfrewshire, said day-to-day policing would be affected but resources would still be available.

Speaking to elected members at a meeting of East Renfrewshire Council’s cabinet, he added: “Clearly there will be an impact on policing.

“Never before in the UK have so many world leaders come together. It is certainly one of, if not the biggest, policing operations that has ever been mounted in the United Kingdom.

“That will have an impact on policing, I won’t try and deny that. We are going to lose resources from day-to-day policing to police the conference.

“What I will reassure the cabinet is that, if members of the public require policing services during that period, then policing services will be available.”

Ch Supt Sutherland said police chiefs are working “very hard” on a “suitable and sustainable policing model that will service East Renfrewshire during that period.”

“There will be some things that we won’t be doing so much of and what we will be doing is turning the levers off on some of our lower-risk activities,” he added.

While lower-level enquiries are likely to be paused, Ch Supt Sutherland said: “We will be focusing our available resources that are left into our response and community policing services.

“It will be a challenging time for us – an exciting time for everybody as well across the Greater Glasgow area as COP26 comes to Glasgow city centre.”