Police chief admits mistakes made during Redbridge’s police merger with other boroughs impacted response times

PUBLISHED: 07:00 15 September 2017 | UPDATED: 07:55 15 September 2017

Deputy Assistant Commissioner Mark Simmons. Picture: Met Police

Deputy Assistant Commissioner Mark Simmons. Picture: Met Police


A senior police officer has admitted mistakes made by the Met during the tri-borough merger have caused response times in Redbridge to plummet.

Last month, the leader of Barking and Dagenham Council, Cllr Darren Rodwell, wrote an open letter to Mayor of London Sadiq Khan in which he wrote: “it is apparent we are nowhere near providing the service we need to keep our residents safe.”

Mr Khan responded, deeming response times in the newly created tri-borough area, which combined Redbridge’s police service with those of Havering and Barking and Dagenham, “unacceptable”.

At a public meeting in Havering on Wednesday, deputy assistant commissioner Mark Simmons accepted the merger had not been handled well.

He said: “I’m not going to make any bones about it, we tried to do too much when we put the Basic Command Unit together, and the evidence of that is there for all to see. “We’ve now almost gone back to the old system – we’ve learnt the lessons from that.

“Some parts of the trial have worked well, but in terms of response times, no, we take that absolutely on the chin, we didn’t get that right.

“We made it difficult for the staff here and we think we’ve now made the changes we need to.

“The proof of the pudding for that will be what happens now over the coming weeks.”

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