Campaigners launch petition calling on Met to keep Wanstead police station open

Campaigners in Wanstead have shown they are not willing to lose their police station without a fight after launching a petition.

The Wanstead & Snaresbrook Residents’ Alliance which represents more than 700 households in the area is calling on the Met Police to keep the station in Spratt Hall Road.

The Met is currently conducting a review of its stock of about 800 buildings in London and will make recommendations to the Mayor’s Office for Policing and Crime from the autumn onwards on buildings which could be sold.

The final decision will lie with the Mayor’s Office.

Geoff Horsnell, of Gloucester Road and a member of the Wanstead Society, said: “If you have a base in Wanstead, it’s a visible presence and police will be seen going to and coming from that base.

“We are of the opinion that police on the streets form a great part of the deterrent.”

At a public meeting in South Woodford last month, at which concerns were also raised over the future of Woodford police station in High Road, Woodford Green, borough commander Det Ch Supt Sue Williams said she had not been informed of any decisions.

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But she did also say that should Wanstead station be sold off as part of the Met’s savings drive, safer neighbourhood officers could patrol in Wanstead from either Barkingside or Leytonstone police stations.

Wanstead Society member Valerie Sawyer, 74, of Manor House Garden, said: “It’s a ridiculous idea.

“The point is they’re supposed to be on the spot.

“If they’re talking about Barkingside it’s not near and Leytonstone is Waltham Forest.”

The group is seeking 1,500 signatures on its petition so the motion can be debated by Redbridge Council.

They were joined outside Wanstead station today by Cllrs Alex Wilson and Peter Goody.