Councillor confirms that Kilburn police station will be closed
- Credit: Archant
Staff at branch located in Salusbury Road are already being relocated
Council and police sources confirmed today that Kilburn police station is heading for the axe and staff are already being relocated.
Following a swathe of cuts to front counter police services across the borough, Cllr Aslam Choudry confirmed today that the station in Salusbury Road, Queen’s Park, would close in the near future and that staff were already being moved.
Cllr Choudry, who is Brent Council’s lead member for community safety and policing, said: “Kilburn is going to be closed, I heard it from the police force the borough commander told me that they are now re-locating some of the staff.” The statement is the firmest indication in recent months that the station’s closure could be imminent.
A police spokesman had previously said: “The existing Kilburn Police Station will not meet longer term policing needs and alternative facilities will be required nearby to meet future policing requirements.”
Today he said the borough would hold onto the Kilburn station only until a new location had been established to provide front counter facilities.
He added: “During this period, any refurbishment work will be limited to health and safety related updates to meet the standards required.”
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Cllr Choudry’s statement came amid discussion of the sale of two police stations in the borough – Harrow Road and Willesden Green buildings – which take place this month.
Estate agent Knight Frank will stop taking bids for the Willesden Green property tomorrow, when its fate will be sealed.
Cllr Choudry said: “When you think crime is a issue and (the Mayor) vouches for that and says crime is an area of concern and then police station is closed it’s totally wrong and I was objecting to that and I will be doing more.”
He added it was “appalling” that Kilburn was to close “despite the assurance from the Mayor of London”.
The closure is the latest in a swathe of cuts to police stations across the borough as part of Mayor of London Boris Johnson’s plan to save £500million over the next three years.
Front counter services in 65 police stations have been earmarked for closure across the country and moved to new ‘contact points’ located in shared public buildings like post offices.
Assistant Commissioner Simon Byrne said: “We’ve listened to the public and understand people just want to know police are close by. So we are changing the way we do things to make neighbourhood policing our priority.
He added: “We will now have around 200 places for the public to access police, in more convenient locations and at differing times.
“We are telling Londoners exactly where their police will be and when, making it clearer what the best way to access police is depending on what their need is. “Making neighbourhood policing our priority demonstrates our commitment to Londoners and will deliver the service they deserve.”