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West Mercia Police cuts will see Malvern lose its emergency call police
EMERGENCY call policemen will no longer be based in Malvern.
THE town’s police station will lose its 24/7 response team which responds to 999 calls, with the service provided by Ledbury or Worcester instead.
It means when people in the town call 999 for police, the response will come from the best available option, although force chiefs say Malvern’s station will stay open and beat patrols will continue.
The downgrading of the station in Victoria Road was announced yesterday afternoon by police and crime commissioner Bill Longmore, as part of a review being carried out by West Mercia Police and the neighbouring Warwickshire force to slash £1.5 million.
Eleven police buildings across the force area will close and the overall number of police patrol bases will reduce from 30 to 11.
Mayor Ian Hopwood said: “I’m seriously concerned about losing our local 999 response, because Malvern is a big town and getting bigger.
“It worries me the idea of a fast response coming over the hills from Ledbury in a blizzard, or coming from Evesham or even Worcester during the rush hour.”
Coun Paul Tuthill, chairman of Malvern Hills District Council, said: “My initial reaction is disappointment, because clearly we would like a local response when people dial 999.
“I’d like to see more detail of the proposals.
“It’s interesting this was not mentioned when the commissioner addressed the council on Tuesday. He hinted, but was not specific.”
Mr Longmore said yesterday: “We all know we are facing challenges. I can look back at the generations of past policing from 30 or 40 years ago and can safely say the basics have not changed, it’s all about people.
“We have got to change things because of the austerity measures in the public sector, which is why we have looked at this.”
Bromyard police station will close and an alternative base open up in a shared building.