THE public will no longer be able to drop into a town’s police station from tomorrow.
The front desk at Bishop’s Waltham will be closing as part of Hampshire Constabulary’s drive to save £54m by 2015.
Although the Hoe Road station will no longer be open to members of the public, it will continue to be manned.
Local district councillor David MacLean said: ‘It’s not a perfect world we live in and unfortunately things are difficult in the big wide world at the moment.
‘I do believe though that whilst there is someone in the police station, there should be someone in the front office if the pressure of work allows it.
‘It will inconvenience an awful lot of people who will now have to go to either Fareham or Winchester. I can’t argue with the worries.’
Tony Kippenberger of the Bishop’s Waltham Society added: ‘It’s just one more little cut and it’s disappointing, particularly for people who need to take things into the police station or drop in to get checks carried out.
‘But thank goodness it’s not closing.’
And Cllr Jean Hammerton was looking on the positive side. She said: ‘Whilst it’s sad, I’m just delighted that the police station itself is to be retained and will be manned 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, as opposed to other areas that have lost their stations altogether.
‘I’m immensely relieved we are keeping ours.’
And the police is reminding the public they can still contact officers at beat surgeries, through hampshire.police.uk, and on Twitter or Facebook.
As previously reported, Petersfield, Waterlooville, Hayling Island, Park Gate and Fratton police stations are all also closing their front desks from tomorrow.
Cosham’s front desk was also closed last month – a month earlier than originally planned – leaving just the central station on Winston Churchill Avenue with a front desk open to the public in Portsmouth.