A new service for victims of crime has been launched by Hertfordshire Constabulary.

The Hertfordshire Victim Care Centre, called Beacon, will go live from April 1 and will provide victims with information and advice to access support.

The confidential service is for all victims of crime, including those who have decided not to report the matter to police, or who have changed their mind about needing support and choose to make contact in the weeks or months after.

Police and Crime Commissioner David Lloyd said: "Victims have told me they want to be heard, they want a single point of contact, they want to be kept up to date on the investigation and they want to be able to access support at any time, not just in the days and weeks following the offence.

"Whether they want to speak to someone for emotional support or practical support, for instance in changing door locks, Beacon will provide a single place which will meet their needs."

Beacon was funded with money raised nationally through the Victim Surcharge imposed by courts on offenders.

Heather Robbie, Hertfordshire manager for charity Victim Support, said: "Hertfordshire Victim Support will be working closely with the police to identify what each victim needs and then to offer the right help for them. This will mean liaising with mental health, social care and Hertfordshire Home Safety services as well as other providers of support for some victims.

"We look forward to working closely with the office of Police and Crime Commissioner, Hertfordshire Constabulary and our partners to help victims of crime find the strength to cope and recover."

From April 1, the new Beacon website will go live at www.hertfordshirebeacon.org.

The hotline 0300 011 55 55 will be open daily from 7am to 10pm for victims to contact the centre direct. Victims who report crimes committed against them to police will automatically be contacted by the centre.

Victims of fraud in the county should continue to report their crime to Action Fraud at www.actionfraud.police.uk or on 0300 123 2040 however they too can access support services by contacting Beacon direct.