Mayor needs to do more to explain police station closures
Published: Thursday 21st December 17
Councillors say the Mayor needs to do more to explain to borough residents why local police stations are closing.
On Thursday of last week the front counter at Wandsworth police station closed to the public.
The public can no longer visit Tooting police station and it is earmarked to be sold. When this happens it will not be available as a base for Tooting’s safer neighbourhoods teams.
And it has also been announced that Lavender Hill police station – currently the borough’s only 24 hour police station - will close completely and is set to be sold once a suitable replacement can be found.
The changes are part of a rationalisation programme overseen by the Mayor’s Office for Policing and Crime (MOPAC) that has seen the closure of dozens of police stations and front office counters across the capital.
Other changes affecting Wandsworth include the ending of informal police contact sessions at a number of community locations including the Asda Supermarket at Roehampton, Battersea’s York Gardens library, St Mary’s Church café in Putney and the small police office in Nine Elms.
Community Services spokesman Cllr Jonathan cook said: “So far there has been very little attempt by the Mayor to explain the thinking behind these changes. But it is happening on his watch and under his administration so he owes it to Londoners to tell them why these decisions are being made.
“No doubt he will argue that he is only reacting to funding pressures, but there are other efficiencies that could and should have been explored before taking the drastic decision to close and sell off police stations and deprive the public of the reassurance these provide.
“What the closures risk doing is making the police more detached and remote from the communities they serve.
“It is not too late for the Mayor to re-think these proposals and come up with a better solution for Londoners.”