Caistor Police Station WILL be saved, says Lincolnshire PCC Alan Hardwick
CAISTOR Police Station will be saved from closure, police and crime commissioner Alan Hardwick confirmed during a tour of the town.
Mr Hardwick, who was elected to lead Lincolnshire Police in November, said the station will remain open because it is an important part of the local community.
Under the previous administration, all small stations – or "police boxes", as they are known – were earmarked for closure.
"I am currently visiting every station in the force to see how they operate," said Mr Hardwick.
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"It is clear that the people of Caistor appreciate the police presence here and that the station is also effective from an operational point of view, so it will not be closing.
"Keeping small stations that are valuable to the community open is my key priority, but I am also hoping to get 1,000 volunteers into the force.
"With increasing pressure on budgets, it is a key way to make the force as effective and efficient as possible."
Mr Hardwick spent time to talking to volunteer Val Fell, from Caistor, about her role at the station, as well as meeting the local officers.
Beat manager PC Chris Bell was pleased that Mr Hardwick took the time to visit Caistor and confirm his commitment to keeping the station open.
He said: "All of the smaller stations in Lincolnshire were earmarked for closure before Alan was elected.
"I think it's very positive that he is now visiting all of the stations and is saving those that are valued by the community.
"We are nowhere near one of the bigger stations so it is very important to the community that we stay open.
"I also think it's positive that Alan is increasing the number of volunteers in the force. Val frees us up to deal with crimes by taking some of the administrative tasks off us."
Val, who has been volunteering at the station for two years, said: "I really enjoy the variety of it.
"As well as manning the front counter, I organise the police surgeries, help give talks in schools and am involved in the Neighbourhood Watch.
"People in the town know who I am and they often stop me in the street to ask questions.
"I think volunteers can play an important role in the police service."