The curious move by Merseyside Police out of their Maghull Police Station on Westway and into the former Youth Coffee Bar and CAB facility space in Maghull Town Hall has had folks head scratching.
When Merseyside Police announced their new accommodation strategy in response to budget cuts it was clear that Police Stations across the County would be downsized and that they could well end up being in shop units in shopping centres.
However, in Maghull things took a surprising turn in that its Town Council in effect invited the Police to rent space from them within Maghull Town Hall. Sadly, resurrecting the recently closed youth facility and Citizens Advice, both of which occupied the same space as the soon to be opened police station, would no longer be possible though. But it’s going to be a nice little earner for Maghull Town Council because it will get a yearly rental income of £11,000 from Merseyside Police.
The £11,000 includes all utilities bills thrown in I understand but then again the Town Council was paying them before as part of the overall utility bills for the Town Hall so in reality MTC is £11,000 better off per year.
The running cost of the present and soon to be closed Police Station on Westway per annum is £101,581, so its no surprise that Merseyside Police jumped at the chance to move into Maghull Town Hall thereby very substantially reducing what it would have cost them to rent a shop unit say in Maghull Square Shopping Centre.
So if my math is correct Merseyside Police has at a stoke reduced its annual running cost of having a Police building in Maghull by £90,581. And Maghull Town Council is a winner too as it has £11,000 coming in each year and no youth support staff to pay either as the youth facility is no more. If memory serves the CAB facility was provided by the Town Council at nil cost to Sefton CAB.
The cost of converting the youth facility into a police station? A budget of £60,000 has be allocated by Merseyside Police for the work.
So everyone’s a winner? Not quite as somehow in the public policy making process Maghull has lost its last publicly funded youth facility and a Citizens Advice facility as well.
The figures used in this posting were supplied to me by Merseyside Police following a Freedom of Information request that I made.