Coventry & Warwickshire

Police discuss closing stations at night to save money

All Warwickshire police stations could be shut to the public late at night under plans to save money, the BBC has learned.

They would be shut after 2200 BST, with five rural stations being closed to the public completely, under the proposals.

Alcester closed to the public this week and Bedworth, Kenilworth, Shipston-on-Stour and Southam would not be open to people, BBC Midlands Today said.

The force said the system would provide a more efficient and effective service.

'Open access'

Warwickshire Police needs to make savings of £14m even before the government announces its cuts, BBC Midlands Today correspondent Peter Wilson said.

The reporter added he had seen documents with the rural stations named earmarked for possible closure.

The force said nothing had yet been decided and it still needed to talk to staff and the public about the impact of these changes were they to take place.

It added that closing Warwick police station to the public and moving its services to Shire Hall had proved a success.

'Budgetary constraints'

Pc Simon Payne, from Warwickshire Police Federation, said: "We police by consent in this country and we need that open access to the public and for the public to have access to us.

"So it's a concern, but it is a difficult decision that has to be made within those budgetary constraints."

Unison regional organiser Charlie Sarell said: "Members of the public will no longer be able to walk into a police station and speak directly with an inquiry officer at any time of the day.

"This is a service that is important to the public."

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