Police confirm four ‘stations’ to close - as soon as tomorrow

Breaking news
Breaking news

Four ‘police stations’ will close as part of a cost-saving mission by the force - starting as soon as tomorrow.

Woburn Sands police information point (PIP), which is manned by volunteers, will shut up shop tomorrow with Olney PIP following in its footsteps on March 17.

Two ‘non-public-facing’ offices in Bradville and Conniburrow where officers are based will also close, but it is not yet known when.

The closures are part of Thames Valley Police’s asset management plan following the announcement the force must cut £44.6million over the next three years.

By March 2018, Bletchley police station and Wolverton police station will be “replaced locally” to save £200,000 a year.

Neighbourhood offices will be “rationalised”, with five set to close down to save £32,000 a year, while surplis land at Newport Pagnell police station will be sold for redevelopment.

Chief Inspector Jim O’Ryan says the closures will not affect front-line services.

He said: “One reason for closing the PIPs is that the number of reports and enquiries being fielded online or by phone, as opposed to in person, has increased over recent years, meaning the PIPs are used less than they have been in the past.

“Sometimes there are days when the PIPs are visited by a very small number of members of the public, or none at all.

“Given that Milton Keynes police station has a 24/7 front counter, we believe that closing the PIPs, along with the other non-public-facing offices, to be a prudent decision as the Force faces up to its budgetary challenges.

“It will help us to protect the number of front-line staff available to keep our communities safe.”

Following Olney High Street’s PIP closure, there are plans for a mobile police station to be parked in the area of the High Street on a regular basis, with dates and locations to be publicised in advance.

Officers currently based at Bradville and Conniburrow will be moved to different locations, which Mr O’Ryan says will have” no impact on police response times or local coverage”.

He added: “In fact, in June 2014, Thames Valley Police actually increased front-line officer numbers – by five – in Milton Keynes, so the number of officers patrolling in the LPA has gone up over the past year.”