Search

Police chiefs defend Wanstead and Woodford station closure proposals at consultation meeting

13:28 12 February 2013

MOPAC advisor Jonathan Glanz, deputy mayor for policing and crime Stephen Greenhalgh, cabinet member for environment, transport and community safety Cllr Shoaib Pater, council leader Cllr Keith Prince, assistant commissioner Simon Byrne and Redbridge borough commander Sue Williams.

MOPAC advisor Jonathan Glanz, deputy mayor for policing and crime Stephen Greenhalgh, cabinet member for environment, transport and community safety Cllr Shoaib Pater, council leader Cllr Keith Prince, assistant commissioner Simon Byrne and Redbridge borough commander Sue Williams.

Archant

Police chiefs gathered in Ilford yesterday evening to address concerns over the possible closure Wanstead and Woodford police stations.

Assistant Met Police commissioner Simon Byrne and Redbridge borough commander Sue Williams.Assistant Met Police commissioner Simon Byrne and Redbridge borough commander Sue Williams.

Residents and councillors grilled a panel including Boris Johnson’s crime chief Stephen Greenhalgh, Metropolitan Police assistant commissioner Simon Byrne and Redbridge borough commander Sue Williams at Redbridge Town Hall, in High Road.

Under proposals drawn up by the Mayor’s Office for Police and Crime (MOPAC) the two stations would be closed to help save £500million.

But the number of police officers in Redbridge would go up from 444 in October 2011 to 530 in 2015 - including 68 more safer neighbourhood officers.

The panel is visiting every London borough to consult over the plans.

MOPAC proposals

Close Wanstead and Woodford police stations

Barkingside opening hours reduced

Ilford Police Station would stay 24-hour

New “public access points” in public buildings where people can report crime

86 more police officers in Redbridge

Minimum one PC and one PCSO for each ward SNT and the rest mobile

Fewer “supervisors” e.g. sergeants and senior managers

More “bobbies on the beat”

Deputy mayor of London Mr Greenhalgh said he was “genuinely listening” to residents.

But for some, the consultation came too late in the day for a strategy due to be published in April.

Cllr Chris Cummins said: “Given the meeting is only an hour, I don’t see what they can achieve.

“It’s just an exercise so they can say they’ve been round and listened.”

Many people were concerned about crime victims having to report crimes at “public access points”.

Resident Gerry Gable, of the police Independent Advisory Group, said: “It’s hard enough for anyone suffering from sexual or domestic abuse to talk to someone at the front desk, let alone in the supermarket or library.”

But Mr Greenlagh insisted victims would not “have to report crime while they get some veg in the supermarket”.

He and Mr Byrne argued that the old model of “Victorian front counters” was in need of reform.

Mr Byrne said: “Why come into a tired old police station when we can come and see you in the comfort of your own home or work or anywhere else?”

Figures recorded in 2010 showed 10 people visited the front counter at Wanstead, 16 at Woodford and 40 at Ilford.

But Cllr Sue Nolan said the figures were lower because Wanstead and Woodford “are never open”.

She said the closure of stations would cause “a field day for criminals”.

Mrs Williams said she was “working extremely hard” to keep Wanstead or Woodford station open or find an “alternative” base.

She added: “As lovely as it is, Wanstead police station is a big old building, with big running costs.

“I’m still looking for something and I’m in touch with the council’s property services.”

Related articles

0 comments

Latest Ilford News Stories

Yesterday, 16:11
An overturned lorry is causing congestion in Redbridge. Picture: PA/Andy Butterton

Drivers should expect delays on the roads because of an overturned lorry on the M11.

Yesterday, 13:39
Car with 'L' plates. Photo: PA David Jones

Wanstead has been named as the toughest place in the UK to pass a driving test.

Yesterday, 12:16
Seven men have been arrested by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) and four tonnes of toxic waste removed after two fuel laundering plants were discovered in Essex on Wednesday Picture: HMRC

Seven men, including two in Ilford, have been arrested and four tonnes of toxic waste removed after two fuel laundering plants were discovered in Essex on Wednesday.

Yesterday, 09:23
Ginger Pig butchers is now open

Famous butchers Ginger Pig has opened its doors today, after taking over the old A.G. Dennis site in Wanstead High Street.

Newsletter Sign Up

Most read news

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Competitions

Which book character do you share cleaning habits with?

Whether you have more in common with put-upon Cinderella, emotionally turbulent Jane Eyre, or easily distracted Mole, you’re sure to appreciate that one lucky winner will receive four sessions of free cleaning. Enter our quiz for your chance to win. All runners up will get £10 off their first clean when making a repeat booking.

£15k prize bundle

Imagine having the opportunity to win an incredible £15,000 bundle of some of the most amazing prizes available. Well, for one lucky contest entrant that dream could soon become a reality because we at MyOffers are offering an incredible free prize bundle that will make even the most hardened person wild with excitement.

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Ilford Recorder
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now