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Closure of Holborn Police Station

Fri 14 July 2017 - Fri 06 October 2017

No, not the entire building.  That will still be in use - just not by us the public.

The Mayor’s Office for Policing and Crime is thinking about closing the public counter at Holborn Police Station.

Here's another 'consultation'.  Why the inverted commas?  Well... call us cynical if you want, but we do wonder if it's already a done deal.  Like the fire stations.

Here's what The Mayor's office says:

As a result of Government funding cuts, since 2010, the Met Police have had to find £600m of savings and must save a further £400m by 2020.

Mayor Sadiq Khan is determined to protect the front line from cuts, and he has published draft plans to: close costly and underused police front counters in London and provide better ways to contact the Met online. 

Doing this would help to meet growing public demand to be able to access Met Police services from smartphones, tablets and computers, whilst saving £10million that could be spent instead on frontline policing.

HV's recent contact experience with the police is disappointing.  Not the officers themselves, but the shocking response time. 4mins to answer a 999 call at 4am, 7-10mins before arriving on scene.  A call to 101 is almost pointless.  It's not just the time taken to answer the call, it's the response, "police will attend within 48hrs". Yeah, riiiight.  Those drug dealers will wait for a couple of days, will they? Comments from officers that the cut backs have meant they're so over-stretched that investigations are difficult and take a long time. Is the closure of the public counter at Holborn going to make that muuch of a difference? Or is it another sign that we're getting further and further away from street-level effective policing?

How many of us have seen a moped-enabled theft or attempted theft this year? Crimes involving powered-two-wheel vehicles have rocketed. From June 2016 - June 2017 the Metropolitan Police registered 16,158 crimes compared with 5,145 the year before. In 2014 they logged just 866, and only 317 in 2011. Certainly this crime is a challenge for the police, but a slow response to answer the phone and a slow attendance at the scene is not going to make the public feel safe.

The police want to move a larger proportion of their work to online reporting and telephone investigation; "...access Met Police services from smartphones, tablets and computers, whilst saving £10million that could be spent instead on frontline policing". What does that really mean - contact the police via smartphone app? No thanks. HV wants to call 999, have the call answered within a few seconds and be told the police are on their way. "Could" - that's not really a promise, is it!  What have we learned from the closure of the fire stations?

Again, it's all about the money. This from the consultation document, "As part of the plans to reduce the size of the MPS estate, allowing us to release  surplus property and invest savings in front line policing, the number of response  bases will be reduced."  Yep.  Flog off the buildings. Although there are no current plans to deploy officers away from Holborn Police Station, if the phone investigations save enough money maybe the option of a luxury block of flats at the end of Lambs Conduit Street will be too tempting to both the Met and property developers.

Do take time to participate in the survey.  Tell Mayor what you think and what you want done. As HV often says, if you don't tell them what you want them to do with your money you can't complain afterwards when it's too late.

Click the links to read  the Mayor's proposals and respond to the consultation. Responses will be received until 5.30pm on 6 October 2017.

1. Read the draft strategy

2. Review the Impact Assessment - it investigates how the draft strategy affects different groups of Londoners

3. Fill out the Questionnaire

By email

Send your comments and answers to the questions to: Consultation@mopac.london.gov.uk

By post

Send your comments or answers to the questions to:

Public Access Consultation
The Mayor’s Office for Policing and Crime
City Hall, More London
Queen’s Walk
London
SE1 2AA