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Cut in opening hours won't affect policing, says new chief
A NEW commander insists policing will not be affected by slashing the opening hours of an underused police station.
The hours of Gerrards Cross Police Station will be slashed by nearly 50 per cent as part of cash-saving plans from Thames Valley Police.
But Superintendent Steve Hockin, the new area commander, said the change will not impact on availability and visibility of officers.
He added: “I think it’s really difficult, we have to find savings in common with other services. Do we keep officers out in communities or do we keep them in police stations?
“We are running exactly the same number officers in the same places, so it’s business as usual.”
The opening hours are currently 10am – 3pm Monday to Friday, but from July this will be cut to 10am – 2pm on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays.
Last year chiefs revealed the Tatling End station could close completely, as it is not fully occupied and is expensive to heat and light.
Supt Hockin said: “Gerrards Cross Police Station probably will close and we’ll move to another location in the area. We will keep a front office police presence and stay local. We are looking at premises at the moment.”
The parish council would like to see officers move to a small office in the centre of the village.
Supt Hockin is the new area commander for South Bucks and Chiltern, after the force decided to merge the senior management of the two districts.
He said the merger will bring some ‘economies of scale’, but stressed he has the same number of officers. His priorities will be reducing burglary and domestic violence.