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Fears over future of police station
FEARS are growing for a police station in Worcestershire - with leading figures in Droitwich saying rumours are rife it could be axed.
Police and crime commissioner Bill Longmore is being called upon to make a “swift denial” about the future of the town’s station.
Town Councillor Ken Jennings, who leads the Conservatives, says traders and residents believe the site will close, with policing controlled from Worcester or another large county station.
Mr Longmore is currently reviewing all police stations across Worcestershire, and has previously admitted some are likely to shut in a bid to save cash.
Coun Jennings said: “There are rumours currently circulating amongst traders and residents in our town that Droitwich police station is to close and that the town’s police will be controlled from Worcester or Bromsgrove.
“Naturally, this is a cause for great concern.
"A town the size of Droitwich needs its own police station with locally based officers who have a detailed knowledge of the local community.
“We need a locally based police force who will be able to respond speedily in an emergency.”
He added: “I hope these rumours prove to be unfounded and I will be asking Mr Longmore for a swift denial and a statement confirming it will remain open.”
Mid-Worcestershire MP Peter Luff has also voiced his concern, saying he is worried about the future of stations in both Droitwich and Evesham.
“Any such closure would be unacceptable to the communities affected and I trust the rumours circulating are without foundation,” he said.
Earlier this month West Mercia Police chief constable David Shaw said closures were “inevitable” and that “tough decisions” would need to be made.
The force is scrapping 140 police officer jobs by 2016, as well as 315 civilian posts due to financial problems.
It is also forging ahead with an ‘alliance’ with Warwickshire Police aimed at combining certain back office functions to save a combined £31 million.
Mr Longmore is also consulting over a possible rise in council tax of £3.64 a year from April.
A statement issued by his office said: “The estate will be looked at but any changes will be designed to maximise the effectiveness of police service provision.
“No decisions on estate changes have yet been made but revision and modernisation of the estate has always been a regular process.”