Holloway police station could close to save money – because hardly anyone reports crime there
- Credit: Archant
Holloway police station could face the axe amid £400m cost-cutting plans for the Met.
The station in Hornsey Road is one of 20 across London that receive few reports each day at its front counter: 1.1 a day on average dureing May, according to figures from the Mayor’s Office for Policing and Crime (Mopac).
Islington police station in Tolpuddle Street, where just shy of five crimes were reported daily in May, would remain if plans laid out by Mopac are approved.
The Met has already slashed £600m off its budget since 2012. But another £400m of savings must be made by 2021, £200m of which has been identified, meaning a further £200m remains outstanding.
Another station under threat is Shoreditch, a few yards over the border into Hackney in Shepherdess Walk.
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“The backdrop to these ambitions is a prolonged period of reductions in funding for policing in London,” writes Sophie Linden in the document, adding that “tackling the financial challenge forces us to make some tough choices”.
Hackney’s former deputy mayor and crime chief, who took up the post of London’s deputy mayor for policing and crime last year, continued: “Only by diverting resources from places where they are no longer needed or used can we protect the front line in this way and deliver the greatest bang for Londoners’ buck.”
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Four safer neighbourhood bases would also be “disposed of” in the plans: in Haggerston Road and Orsman Road in Haggerston; Shacklewell Lane in Dalston; and the Urban Hive in Theydon Road, Upper Clapton; as well as the shared Hackney Service Centre.
It is estimated £170m of capital could be raised by closing “underused” front counters and selling “expensive to run” buildings that “only support back-office activity”. That money could be spent on improving technology available to officers on the front line as well as the £10m annual running costs, Mopac says. That’s the equivalent of more than 170 police officers.
“Every pound saved by closing a poorly used front counter is a pound of savings that we do not have to find by reducing officers,” the consultation says.
Planning expert Nick Perry said the site could be worth £10million to £15m to a keen developer. It is a few hundred square metres smaller than 100 Hornsey Road, opposite the Sobell, which sold for £3.6m in 2015 and has been earmarked for 25 flats and a children’s nursery by Telford Homes.
To read the Mopac report in full, visit the Mopac website.