"NIGHTMARE" police cuts will put every man, woman and child in Barnsley at risk, it's been warned.

The stark warning came from Neil Bowles, chairman of the South Yorkshire branch of the Police Federation, as it launched its #CutsHaveConsequences campaign.

Police chiefs must make savings of £74.5 million by 2017 and Mr Bowles said 600 police officer jobs had already been axed in the last eight years.

He said while there are some 2,600 officers on the force now, the fear is that by 2018 the federation expects to have just 2,400 - branding it "an ongoing policing nightmare".

The federation, which represents bobbies on the beat in South Yorkshire, has called on the public to raise the importance of a properly funded police service with councillors and MPs.

Mr Bowles said: "The budget cuts mean less policing in South Yorkshire. This affects every resident, employee, child, student and pensioner in Barnsley, Doncaster, Rotherham and Sheffield.

"We have lost 600 police officers since 2007 - the number of officers working in communities have been drastically reduced. 

"Things aren't right. The public pay for policing but they're being short-changed."