Police 999 call centres could be pooled with neighbouring forces

Herts crime commissioner David Lloyd and chief constable Andy Bliss with Beds counterparts Olly Martins and Colette Paul, and Sir Graham Bright and Simon Parr of Cambs
Herts crime commissioner David Lloyd and chief constable Andy Bliss with Beds counterparts Olly Martins and Colette Paul, and Sir Graham Bright and Simon Parr of Cambs
1
Have your say

Proposals are being drawn up to merge Herts Police control rooms with two neighbouring forces in a bid to cut costs.

The move is the latest in a series of collaborative measures between the tri-force Strategic Alliance, pooling Herts, Beds and Cambs police resources to combat financial challenges and reduce the impact of budget cuts on the frontline.

The three forces’ chief constables and crime commissioners are now drafting plans to move 999 and non-emergency call centres to just one or two shared locations between the three counties.

Crime recording services will also come under the same centres, with final proposals expected to be presented in spring.

If the final proposals are agreed, it is anticipated the cost-cutting scheme could recoup at least £5million a year and help bridge the forces’ combined £68million funding gap over the next four years.

By 2019, it is anticipated that a wide range of further joint operational and organisational support functions will have been established to bring economies of scale and increased resilience.

Herts police and crime commissioner David Lloyd said: “This is an important step and represents the next major phase of an historic collaboration between the three forces.

“Crucially, this agreement will pave the way for Hertfordshire Constabulary to work more efficiently to meet our tough spending targets while at the same time minimise the impact on local policing in the county.

“I am therefore delighted that the Strategic Alliance has been able to come together and agree to progress the proposal to move to one or two control rooms serving the three counties.

“The three forces have an established track record of successful collaboration and I am confident that this success can be built on with this agreement.”

Chief Constable for Herts Andy Bliss said: “The operational and financial advantages of joining specialist units together have already been proven. By collaborating the control rooms we will have greater resilience to deal with emergency and non-emergency calls plus manage demand on policing

services.

“This is a vital part of our plans to ensure that when the public need our help they can contact us easily and in ways that suit them. Ultimately this will help us to fight crime and keep people safer.”

The three forces are also considering alternative ways for the public to make contact and are also exploring technological methods to provide access to key services online.