Police enquiry office in Honiton could face closure

10:38 16 May 2014

Archant

Honiton’s public enquiry office could face closure as Devon and Cornwall Police announce new proposals following a forcewide review.

The proposed changes are expected to save around £760,000 per annum. Honiton and Exmouth would close if the new proposals are given the go ahead.

Speaking today about the proposal to close the enquiry office at Honiton local MP Neil Parish, at a meeting of Honiton and District Chamber of Commerce, said: “It does concern me. I have written to the chief constable to review the situation.”

Public enquiry offices in Totnes, Tiverton, Okehampton, Newton Abbot, Falmouth, Penzance, Bude, Liskeard and Launceston would also close.

Although, offices at Plymouth Charles Cross, Torquay and Exeter Heavitree Road will remain open for six days a week between 8am and 6pm on weekdays and 9am to 5pm on Saturday.

Exact details around opening hours and staffing are still to be confirmed.

The overall number of full-time equivalent public enquiry officer posts will be reduced from 61 to 34 as part of the plan.

Assistant Chief Constable Paul Netherton said: “In the current financial climate the force needs to make challenging decisions around how we best use our resources to benefit our communities.

“We are required to make difficult decisions in order to maintain visibility and maintain front line policing whenever possible.

“The force has carried out a review of how the public contact police in Devon and Cornwall and it has shown that the amount of people physically calling at a police station continues to diminish.

“In even our busiest stations this can be as low as five to six people an hour at peak times and for quieter stations can be no personal callers at all for periods of time.

“As a result, we will now formally consult with staff unions regarding how we use public enquiry offices to get the best value from the resources that we have.

“The force currently receives around one million contacts a year from the public via 999, 101 and contact with the Force Enquiry Centre and force website. This number far outweighs the amount of people actually attending a police station.

“With the development of online communication and further investment in technology, it is only likely to reduce further.”

ACC Netherton added: “While we may be reducing the amount of Public Enquiry Offices immediately accessible to the public, the number of operational police stations is not changing and police officers and staff will still work from those stations affected by the Public Enquiry Office Review.

“While closing some enquiry offices has an inevitable effect on staff and a change in the way we operate as a Force, the considerable savings are expected to be in excess of £ 750,000 per year and the force is faced with making difficult decisions about the way in which we deliver services to our communities.

“Maintaining a visible presence in our communities remains a critical factor and we will do everything possible to target resources and achieve this. It is hoped this review will further allow us to increase visibility away from traditional police sites.

ACC Netherton further added: “Innovation is key and having a more mobile police presence means a better, more efficient and visible police service.

“We are committed to maintaining community based services and working with partner agencies to do this in the most efficient way possible.

“It is important to emphasise that this plan is subject to full consultation with a definitive decision expected in July.”

Following consultation the changes, if given the go ahead, would take place later in the year.

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Midweek Herald visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Midweek Herald staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Midweek Herald account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Other News Stories

Yesterday, 16:44
Sitting pretty on a pink tractor is two and a half Lottie York at the Honiton Hill Rally. Ref mhh 9350-36-15SH. Picture: Simon Horn

Pictures:

Read more
Yesterday, 08:12
Lyme Regis Lifeboat

RIB comes to the rescue before Lyme Regis lifeboat crew carry pair to the safety of the harbour

Read more
Sunday, August 30, 2015
Dame Hilary Mantel: 'As I work my way through the third book it often feels as exciting as the first day I started'

Speaking ahead of the Budleigh Salterton Literary Festival, of which she is president, the Wolf Hall author recalls the first time she visited the East Devon town as a teenager.

Read more
Saturday, August 29, 2015
Honiton Chamber of Commerce chairman Colin Wright.

Honiton and District Chamber of Commerce chairman Colin Wright says the move will bring more light to the town centre.

Read more
Friday, August 28, 2015
Police are appealing for any information about Stephen Cogger who has been missing since last night (Wednesday)

Police are appealing for the public’s help to trace a 65-year-old man missing from Honiton.

Read more
Friday, August 28, 2015
Artist Luke Jerram with THG staff.

International artist Luke Jerram is aiming to create a ‘garden of time’ at Thelma Hulbert Gallery.

Read more
Friday, August 28, 2015
Lyme Regis Lifeboat

Crew carry out an extensive search of the area

Read more
Thursday, August 27, 2015
Devon Air Ambulance

The incident happened at 2.40pm today (Thursday).

Read more
Thursday, August 27, 2015
Seaton carnival queen Jenny Webber

Seaton teenager needs to raise £4,000 to fund her journey to the South Pacific

Read more
Wednesday, August 26, 2015
Don and Jean Lee with their son Chris holding a photo of their wedding day 70 years ago. Picture: CHRIS CARSON

The Queen congratulates Don and Jean on 70 years of happy marriage

Read more

Local Weather

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 17°C

min temp: 9°C

Most Read News

Great British Life


Great British Life

Family notices
Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Submit a Story
Buy Photos
Competitions
iwitness24
Facebook
Twitter
Google Plus Page
Reader Travel

Family Notices 24

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Midweek Herald e-edition today E-edition


Honiton's trusted business finder