Wombourne Police Station closing in £13.7m Staffordshire force cutbacks
A village police station is to close with officers moving into nearby council offices.
Staffordshire Police is shutting Wombourne Police Station as part of a programme to save £13.7m across its estate.
The station will be sold and neighbourhood officers moved to the village’s Civic Centre, a quarter of a mile away.
The station, which has no public desk, was subject of a community campaign which ended up Parliament seven years ago.
More than 1,200 people signed a petition calling for police presence to be retained in the village when the idea of closing the station was first mooted.
Today, members of the community welcomed a force base at the Civic Centre.
Councillor Barry Bond said: “I welcome the opportunity of the police maintaining its presence in the village.
“We have always had a good police presence and I know there was concern over a station closure.
“But this is a good move and we’ve also been told there will be more neighbourhood police officers coming to South Staffordshire.”
He added: “We work closely with the police. With officers moving into the Civic Centre, it will only improve our relationship.”
Adrian Johnson, owner of Boxley Butchers in the village, said: “I’m pleased the police are not moving out of the village.
“We need to keep a good presence of officers who cover the village well. I’m pleased with the policing here.”
Neighbourhood policing at the force is being reshaped with officers being encouraged to work remotely, rather than inside stations. Eight more officers are also being added to South Staffordshire’s neighbourhood policing team by the end of this month.
A Staffordshire Police spokesman said: “The sale is part of a review of operational policing in the area, modernising our approach and utilising benefits of smart technology that enable neighbourhood police officers to work from a variety of bases, not just traditional stations.”
He added: “The sale will not affect the policing of the area. Local officers continue to have visibility, patrolling the area as usual, working as part of the increased community policing team at South Staffordshire.”
It is the first police station closure by the force since 2015 when bases in Chasetown, Tunstall and Stoke were shut.
It will leave 21 stations used by the force. They include Watling Street, Rugeley, Lichfield, Cannock and Stafford town centre.
Crimes in Staffordshire went up eight per cent from 2016/17 to 2017/18, according to latest crime figures.