East Hampshire MP commends hard work of officers during police cuts

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AN MP has praised police officers for their hard work after spending a shift with them.

East Hampshire MP Damian Hinds spent a Friday night shift, from 5pm until 3am, with police officers at Alton station, which covers Petersfield and surrounding villages.

Mr Hinds said: ‘It was a normal shift, but a long night for the officers.

‘We’re all rightly grateful to our police men and women for all the excellent work they do, and they have my special thanks for giving me the chance to be reminded of just how much they do on a “normal day at the office”.’

As reported in The News, East Hampshire will be served by one police station in Alton as part of Hampshire Constabulary’s £50m of budget cuts needed by 2015.

It means stations in both Petersfield and Whitehill will have to close.

At Petersfield and Whitehill, neighbourhood officers will continue to work and will remain at both locations until new homes are found.

But the new front counter site, where members of the public can still walk in and report crimes, is moving to Alton police station.

Mr Hinds said: ‘A police base in both towns will remain; they are just moving house, not moving out.’

However, John Apter, Hampshire Police Federation chairman, has spoken of his concerns that police resources in East Hampshire are being stretched to the limit as it is such a big area to police.