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Crime chief in vow to keep Oswestry police and fire stations

By Jonny Drury | Oswestry | Crime | Published:

No plans are in place to close Oswestry's police or fire station, says West Mercia Police and Crime Commissioner John Campion.

John Campion

Mr Campion addressed Oswestry's annual town meeting to offer assurances over the services.

Last month Mr Campion was given the seal of approval by Home Secretary Amber Rudd to complete his controversial takeover of fire services in the region.

In the coming months, the commissioner will also be responsible for Shropshire Fire and Rescue Services, as well as Hereford and Worcester, replacing their respective fire authorities.

At the meeting he admitted he would be looking at ways of cost saving through estates and properties to ensure the protection of front line services.

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However, Mr Campion said that the location of the police and the fire stations in Oswestry were such that he was not looking at the closure of either at the current time.

He was responding to a question by councillor Paul Milner, who told the meeting he was concerned about he ramifications of a strategic alliance.

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He said: "Oswestry lost its ambulance station and I am worried that we could lose one of our other services."

"I am also concerned that call centre staff should have local knowledge."

Mr Campion, who addressed the meeting alongside local inspector Tracey Ryan, said the days of having front counter staff at stations such as Oswestry were over, but officers were often in the building.

He said the public were encouraged to ring police rather that visit the station, and insisted that unlike other force areas, he had retained front line staff in the region.

He added: "I have also protected the Safer Neighbourhood Teams."

Jonny Drury

By Jonny Drury
@JonnyDrury_Star

Senior reporter covering Oswestry and Mid Wales.

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