Two police counters in Bromley to close as Sadiq Khan takes 'drastic action' to protect Met Police budget
PUBLISHED: 16:20 01 November 2017 | UPDATED: 16:20 01 November 2017
Bromley Police Station will remain open
Plans for Bromley to lose two of its three front counters have been approved today.
In July, mayor of London Sadiq Khan announced plans to shut West Wickham and Copperfield House in Penge, in a bid to save Met Police vital funds in the face of government cuts.
A survey of the counters revealed West Wickham received no visits on an average day, while Copperfield House received 0.1 over the course of a month.
Both buildings will now be sold off to fund Met Police services.
Bromley Police Station will continue to operate as a 24/7 front counter for the public to report crime face to face.
Announcing the decision, Mr Khan said: “The drastic nature of government cuts to policing budgets has left us with no choice but to take drastic action and make some very difficult decisions.
“Keeping Londoners safe is my number-one priority, and supporting officers out on the beat in our communities is more important than keeping open buildings that are simply not used by the vast majority of the public, and where just eight per cent of crimes are reported.
“I am confident that these final plans maintain the best possible service for Londoners, and will provide the access to the police that they need – especially in an emergency. The combination of one 24/7 front counter in every borough, more dedicated local officers in better contact with the communities they serve, and a significantly improved online service will mean that Londoners are able to contact the police in the way that suits them best.
“The fact is that as a result of government cuts, police officer numbers are falling, and every pound spent keeping a police station open is a pound that would otherwise need to be found by cutting police officer numbers even further. That is why, at a time of crime rising nationally and the terrorism threat we face, I continue to call on Ministers to urgently end the police funding crisis.”
Met Police commissioner Cressida Dick gave her backing to the announcement, adding: “Of course we know there will be some people who need to speak to a police officer face to face, and there are still many ways in which they can do that.
“The most effective place for our officers to be is out on the streets. Be that on patrol responding to the public, proactively out tackling crime on operations or in their communities forging stronger, better links gaining vital local information.