West London: Journeys to police stations could increase 400 per cent after closures, research shows
- Residents of Hammersmith, Kensington and Westminster face long walks under proposed closures
- Some journey times increase by 400%
- Fears over impact on vulnerable and less mobile
Residents in areas of west London could see a 400 per cent increase in the distance to their nearest police station under closures proposed by the Mayor of London, new research shows.
Sadiq Khan wants to close front counters at Fulham, Belgravia, West End Central and Notting Hill, as well as seven neighbourhood bases in the area.
Research carried out by Tony Devenish, London Assembly member for West Central, found some journey times will quadruple under the proposals, with Pimlico residents facing a 40-minute walk to their nearest police station compared to the ten minutes it currently takes.
Residents of Fulham would see their journeys double from 25 to 50 minutes, whilst those living in Kensal Green face almost an hour’s walk compared to the current 35 minutes.
Furthermore, the walk between retained police stations in Kensington and Westminster will nearly double to 1 hour 15 minutes, having previously been split by the station in Belgravia.
Mr Devenish fears the increased journey times could pose a problem for vulnerable residents and those with mobility issues.
He said: “I am very concerned about the practical impact of these closures on people’s ability to report crimes in person, particularly those who are vulnerable or less mobile.
“Not only do police stations allow easier reporting of crime, they have a strong impact on the public’s sense of safety and can be a deterrent to crime more generally.
“Sadiq Khan claims to be consulting on these plans, but with meeting invites issued at just a few days’ notice it is clear he is simply paying lip service to residents who have genuine concerns.
“These closures will have a major impact on the people of west London. My residents deserve better from the Mayor and MOPAC.”
Walking times to nearest police station from west London locations:
|Location||Previous minutes to walk||After proposed closures|
|Between Kensington and Westminster Police stations||40-50||75|
– Tony Devenish is the GLA Member for West Central
– Mayor’s draft strategy consultation report on public access and engagement https://www.london.gov.uk/sites/default/files/public_acess_strategy.pdf