|Mayor's Plan Means Cutbacks For Local Police Stations|
Chiswick open for office hours, Brentford and Feltham to close
Hounslow Police Station will be the only 24 hour police service in the Borough, according to the Mayor's new Policing Plan which sees Chiswick Police Station's front office hours reduced to 9-5 (Monday to Fridays) and Feltham and Brentford stations closing.
Chiswick will remain as "an operational base", while Brentford station is likely to be sold. Brentford SNT already operate out of Chiswick. Feltham Police Station front counter will close but the police station will remain in use as an operational base. In addition to the two front counters, there will be four 'contact points' on the borough where the public can get in touch with police.
A police spokesperson for Hounslow Borough said; "We do not have firm timescales for these closures and for the new contact points yet - this is under review and we will let the public know as soon as we have more information. In the meantime, Hounslow, Chiswick, Brentford and Feltham front counters all remain open and the opening times can be found on our website www.met.police.uk."
Detective Chief Superintendent Carl Bussey, Borough Commander for Hounslow has commented on the MOPAC plan; "There are a variety of ways for the public to contact the police, including going online and calling 101. I am delighted that we will be working with our community partners to provide new contact points for the public in Brentford and Heston, in addition to the contact points at Feltham and Chiswick Police Stations. Our contact points will be staffed by members of local neighbourhood teams and will be locations for non-urgent, face-to-face contact, where the public can meet their local police at regular known times".
The new Police and Crime Plan (MOPAC) announced by the Mayor, Boris Johnston, will see an increase of 51 police officers for Hounslow - 23 less than the Mayor has promised, according to London Assembly member Murad Qureshi. Over 60 police stations and front counters will be closed across London. A total of 12 stations earmarked for closure have been reprieved but more stations that were safe have been put on the list.
The Mayor had been criticised for claiming that all of London's 32 boroughs will see an increase in the number of police officers based in their borough, as it is based on police numbers in 2011, a low point for the Met following a recruitment freeze.
"Compared to 2010, 17 of London’s 32 boroughs will see a decrease in the number of police officers, and the remaining boroughs will not receive as many extra officers as promised. The new Police and Crime Plan repeats the claim that there will be an increase in the number of police officer based in the borough by 74 but Hounslow will in fact only see an increase of 51 police officers - 23 less than the Mayor has promised," said Mr Qureshi.
“Boris is planning on closing Brentford police station against the wishes of local residents who have been clear in their opposition to the Mayor’s plans. He told us that all police stations closed down would receive like-for-like replacements but today’s announcement shows this isn’t the case. Rather than wasting time promoting himself on the national stage, the Mayor should be paying attention to his day job and getting a better deal for Londoners from his colleagues in government.
“Since 2010 we have lost 2,208 police officers and 1,778 PCSOs in London, the Mayor states a key aim is to have at or around 32,000 police officers, he has repeatedly failed to deliver on this promise.
“We welcome some changes made by the Mayor, such as prioritising sexual assaults and serious youth violence, after we raised concerns with him. However, today we have further evidence that the Mayor and government’s police cuts are too far, too fast and are hitting the frontline. Londoners will lose nearly half of their police stations and, contrary to Boris’ claim, 17 of London’s 32 boroughs will see a reduction in the number of police officers they have.”