London police to be based in post offices as Scotland Yard makes £500m cuts

 

Police services will be offered in a Post Office in a trial scheme held as Scotland Yard faces making cuts of £500 million.

Deputy Mayor Stephen Greenhalgh announced today that the Metropolitan Police is in "very early discussions" to set up the pilot, which will be established in six months' time.

He said: "Typically they are staffed by people who are security cleared, are used to taking cash, used to transactions. Some Post Offices also have secure rooms as well.

"What we propose to do at this stage, and we are in very early discussions with the Post Office, is to pilot something, to test something out, and to only expand that if it works.

"But in theory Post Offices could provided a fixed point on the high street, with some branding with the Metropolitan Police Service, where you could potentially bring your lost property, if you need to produce identification, if there's a licence that you need to go to a police station for you could maybe do that in a Post Office. And even very simple crime reporting potentially could be done."

The force plans to sell 200 buildings including the landmark New Scotland Yard as it faces making cuts of £500 million to its £3.6 billion annual budget.

In total 65 front counters are facing closure - the force says that fewer people are visiting police stations in person and these are the least used facilities in the capital.

A public consultation will begin tonight on how Met bosses should deal with the heavy cutbacks.

Proposals outlined today include the movement of 800 detectives from specialist squads out to neighbourhood teams.

Assistant Commissioner Simon Byrne said: "Some of the people in squads, if you're using how we train and accredit, aren't actually detectives, they're just constables who wear jeans and a t-shirt. So their level of training is different to someone who has gone on a course."

There would be more constables under the plans - up from 24,630 now to 25,909 in 2015, but a reduction in senior ranks.

These would go from 37 senior managers and 7,160 supervisors now, down to 26 senior managers and 6,022 supervisors in two years' time.

Deputy Commissioner Craig Mackey said dealing with fewer chances for promotion for the remaining officers was "challenging".

He said: "That's one of the most challenging things internally. In fairness that is part of the whole programme of change. There will be fewer opportunities for promotion in the short term, but in 2015/2016 that will open up again."

Instead of an existing 107 expert units in boroughs, there would be one detective squad in each of the 32 London boroughs dealing with a range of crimes.

Mr Byrne said: "Every crime takes place in a street, a home, it's wedded in a business, it's wedded in a community. At the moment we've got over 107 different squads working in my bit of the Met. It's just inefficient.

"Most of the people that we arrest and deal with are spree offenders. By putting false barriers around how we investigate, we miss a trick."

A consultation session will be held in each London borough about the plans, finishing at the end of February.

PA

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
Life and Style
life
Arts and Entertainment
Cold case: Aaron McCusker and Christopher Eccleston in ‘Fortitude’
tvReview: Sky Atlantic's ambitious new series Fortitude has begun with a feature-length special
Voices
Three people wearing masks depicting Ed Miliband, David Cameron and Nick Clegg
voicesPolitics is in the gutter – but there is an alternative, says Nigel Farage
Voices
The veterans Mark Hayward, Hugh Thompson and Sean Staines (back) with Grayson Perry (front left) and Evgeny Lebedev
charity appealMaverick artist Grayson Perry backs our campaign
News
i100
News
people
Sport
Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho
footballThe more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him
Life and Style
Vote green: Benoit Berenger at The Duke of Cambridge in London's Islington
food + drinkBanishes thoughts of soggy school dinners and turn over a new leaf
News
Joel Grey (left) poses next to a poster featuring his character in the film
peopleActor Joel Grey comes out at 82
News
i100
News
business
2015 General Election
May2015

Poll of Polls

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Ashdown Group: Marketing & Sales Manager

£40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A reputable organisation within the leisure i...

Tradewind Recruitment: Science Teacher

£90 - £140 per day: Tradewind Recruitment: I am currently working in partnersh...

Recruitment Genius: Doctors - Dubai - High "Tax Free" Earnings

£96000 - £200000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Looking for a better earning p...

Recruitment Genius: PHP Developer

£32000 - £36000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A rapidly expanding company in ...

Day In a Page

Isis hostage crisis: The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power

Isis hostage crisis

The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power, says Robert Fisk
Missing salvage expert who found $50m of sunken treasure before disappearing, tracked down at last

The runaway buccaneers and the ship full of gold

Salvage expert Tommy Thompson found sunken treasure worth millions. Then he vanished... until now
Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Maverick artist Grayson Perry backs our campaign
Assisted Dying Bill: I want to be able to decide about my own death - I want to have control of my life

Assisted Dying Bill: 'I want control of my life'

This week the Assisted Dying Bill is debated in the Lords. Virginia Ironside, who has already made plans for her own self-deliverance, argues that it's time we allowed people a humane, compassionate death
Move over, kale - cabbage is the new rising star

Cabbage is king again

Sophie Morris banishes thoughts of soggy school dinners and turns over a new leaf
11 best winter skin treats

Give your moisturiser a helping hand: 11 best winter skin treats

Get an extra boost of nourishment from one of these hard-working products
Paul Scholes column: The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him

Paul Scholes column

The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him
Frank Warren column: No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans

Frank Warren's Ringside

No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans
Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

Homeless Veterans appeal

MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

Comedians share stories of depression

The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

Has The Archers lost the plot?

A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

14 office buildings added to protected lists

Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee