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Why have we been left without a police officer?
A POLICEMAN has been allocated to cover a high-priority area of Worcester, but his relocation has left other parts of the city without a dedicated officer.
PC Tim Woods was previously the local policing officer for the Nunnery (which includes Shrub Hill, Ronkswood, Spetchley Road and parts of Red Hill), Warndon and Warndon Villages policing areas.
Although he is still based at Warndon police post, he will now concentrate on the Gorse Hill policing area (Tolladine and parts of Warndon).
The move leaves Nunnery and Warndon Villages without a dedicated officer and comes amid growing concern about a decline in the number of local policing officers in south Worcestershire.
Councillor Richard Boorn, who represents Nunnery, said the move was “bad news” for residents. He said: “We have police community support officers here and I genuinely believe they do a really good job.
“But they can’t do it all and they haven’t got the powers police officers have got. It’s not a good situation to be in at all.
“Every area needs a police officer, and it’s not like there isn’t a real need here. We’ve had break-ins down Spetchley Road and a drugs raid in Ronkswood.
“Nobody can say we don’t need a police officer. It’s a prime example of frontline cuts.”
Last month, we revealed that a review by West Mercia Police had led to concerns that neighbourhood police stations could close and the number of ‘beat bobbies’ be drastically reduced.
West Mercia say local policing teams will remain although no decision has been taken about the number of officers or where they will be based.
The review has been ordered following the force’s alliance with Warwickshire Police – to save about £30 million.
A spokesman said the proposed restructure of neighbourhood teams had been put on hold until the election and appointment of a police and crime commissioner next month.
“Although this means in the short term, Nunnery is without a dedicated local policing officer, we would like to reassure local people that the area is being covered by officers from other neighbourhood teams,” he said.
“PC Tim Wood remains based at Warndon, with a primary focus on Gorse Hill.”
He said the police officer who covers Battenhall and St Peter’s will eventually have responsibility for Nunnery.
MEMBERS of Warndon Parish Council have expressed their disappointment that they were not consulted on the decision to move PC Tim Wood, with one councillor calling the lack of a local policing officer in the area “disturbing”.
At a meeting of the parish council on Monday night, community support officer (CSO) Jenny Humphries said PC Wood had been moved to Gorse Hill because there was not a police officer there.
But Councillor Ray Morris said: “Only a matter of months ago we made peace with the police about co-ordinating with us, then we get this shock announcement.
“I don’t know who’s making the decisions, but no one is talking to us about it.
“It’s really, really disturbing that we don’t have a local police officer present.”
CSO Humphries said: “The reason why Tim has moved to Gorse Hill is because it’s a red area and Warndon Villages is a green area. The priority lies with Gorse Hill.”
But Coun Steve Mackay said: “We wouldn’t want to become a red area.”
Chairman Nick Fielden said the fact the parish council had not been informed of the decision to move PC Wood was disappointing. The parish council voted to write a letter to Inspector Janet Heritage, who is in charge of geographical policing for Worcester.