Lib Dem pledge to restore axed police station enquiry offices
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Walk-in enquiry offices at all bar two of Cambridgeshire’s police stations have been scrapped.
Police said it is a cost cutting move to “streamline services”.
You can still book an appointment to see someone at a police ‘surgery’ but the days of full public access have all but gone.
Walk in services remain only at Parkside Police Station in Cambridge and Thorpe Wood Police Station in Peterborough; they will remain open from 8am to 8pm every day.
Appointments at other stations though can be made through the force’s webchat service or by calling 101.
In recent years the enquiry office at Ely, for instance, was closed “due to staff sickness” but later remained “temporarily closed”. It won’t re-open.
Lib Dem police and crime commissioner candidate Rupert Moss-Eccardt said the announcement of permanent closure for local enquiry offices is “disappointing”.
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He said: “The precept has now been raised more than allowed for in the budget so some more money is available.
“Cambridgeshire Police should not be retreating behind locked doors.
“Online or phone access are not always appropriate and is a further weakening of community engagement.
“Any savings now could be illusory if the police become less effective and legitimate as a result. If elected, I shall restore a walk-in service.”
The police ‘surgeries’ will be available for members of the public seeking non-crime advice or to report crime, at different locations each week.
Alternatively, people can report crime and intelligence online, through the force’s webchat service, or by calling 101.
Chief Constable Nick Dean said: “We are having to streamline our services.
“It is with regret that we can’t keep our walk-in services at more of our enquiry offices but unfortunately with the financial constraints that I outlined last year it isn’t possible.
“I’m encouraging the public to consider using our online services to report crimes or intelligence as these are handled the same way as any other report.
“I appreciate there may be some people who don’t have access to online services and for those people I would encourage them to phone 101, which can still be done using the yellow phones outside of each station.
Limited lost property services remain in place at Parkside and Thorpe Wood.