I posted not so long ago regarding the recently notified restructuring of Merseyside Police and my concerns about the South Sefton Community Team being based at Marsh Lane Police Station which is far from being a central location for the area concerned. Indeed, my worry as expressed in that previous posting, is that communities such as Lydiate and Melling may be too far away from Bootle’s Marsh Lane to get a effective policing service.
My previous post is available via this link:-
I asked the Clerk of Lydiate Parish Council to take up such concerns with Inspector Phil Hatton who will be in charge of the South Sefton Community Team and below is his response:-
I note the concerns, which I had obviously already identified myself.
We have played no part in the review/reorganisation itself, but I have already raised the issue to the restructure team.
We are looking at ways to mitigate the concern.
1) It is to be emphasised that there will always be 24 hour cover provided by the ‘Response & Resolution’ Officers – who are separate from the Community team. They will be available to deal with calls for service regarding spontaneous incidents and currently attend Emergency incidents on average within 10 minutes.
2) The Community Team will retain a ‘single point of contact’ Officer (SPOC) for Lydiate. Additionally you will be provided with details of a Community Sergeant who will have Lydiate as part of their area of responsibility.
3) It is anticipated that the Community Police Officers will be able to transport PCSO’s into the locality when necessary.
4) We are also looking at giving selected PCSO’s driving capability, to enable them to get to outlying areas directly, and then go on foot patrol.
5) Clearly, our capability to provide day to day cover (in any locality) is now seriously challenged. However, should an ongoing issue of concern be identified in Lydiate, then the whole South Sefton Community team can be deployed to deal. We are going to have to be more issue-based rather than restricted by geography. Similarly, if any support is required with Community Events then get the requests in early!
There are still a lot of logistics re. the restructure being ironed out as you can imagine. I will provide more details when I have them prior to 30th January.
I like Phil Hatton and have always been impressed with his efforts when I have raised issues with him in the past so I know he will do all he can to ensure that those communities a long way from Marsh Lane will not be neglected. However, this restructuring goes to show how deep the cuts are to Merseyside Police and their ability (or is that inability?) to do all that we citizens would wish them to do.
The proof of the policing pudding will clearly be in the eating when the restructure takes place. We can only hope for the best.