Council opposes police station closures

Nelson police station
Nelson police station

Pendle Council has passed a motion opposing Lancashire Police’s plans to close front counter desks in the borough.

The motion was an amalgamation of two, the first of which was proposed by Coun. David Whipp and the second by Coun. Naeem Ashraf, opposing the planned closure to the public of police stations in Barnoldswick and Brierfield and the complete closure of the police station in Earby.

Also within the motion, the council has called for a meeting with Lancashire’s Chief Constable and the Police Authority as well as calling on Pendle MP Andrew Stephenson to vote against the introduction of elected Police Commissioners.

During the debate on the issue, Coun. Whipp said that police stations were “part and parcel” of the fabric of everyday life and that closing them would have a negative impact on communities.

Coun. Shelagh Derwent added that even though visitor numbers per hour at the three stations were low; 1.6 in Barnoldswick, 1.3 in Brierfield and 0.9 in Earby, she would be supporting the motion.

Following the meeting, Coun. Ashraf said: “This will be sending entirely the wrong message about policing in Brierfield if it goes through. Effectively closing a station that was only opened a few years ago can’t be the right way.

“I was happy to combine my motion calling on the Chief Constable and a member of Lancashire’s Police Authority to attend a special meeting of the council to listen to the concerns of councillors and local residents.

“We are also calling on MP Andrew Stephenson to support Pendle people by voting against the introduction of elected Police Commissioners. Nobody wants them and setting them up will waste over £100 million of money that should be going into policing.”