Open day success and the future Date published: 17th June 2015 12am
A highlight for this month was the Emergency Services Open Day we share with Cheshire Fire and Rescue service. This took place on our headquarters site at Winsford which is tailor made for such a big event. We had a fab day. Visitor numbers far exceeded expectations and it had a great family atmosphere as we highlighted how we police the county to thousands of visitors. Many officers and staff not only attended the day but gave up time setting up and taking down the many demonstrations.
A personal highlight was taking part in the petrol bomb test, something I had not experienced in over 20 years. Let me tell you it’s warmer than you might think in all the kit we have to wear to keep us safe! Overall, a day where I was tremendously proud of the commitment and relationship that my officers and staff enjoy with the people we police locally.
Returning to the day to day, plans to boost our local policing presence gather pace. I joined Police and Crime Commissioner John Dwyer to open the refurbished building at Runcorn police station whilst work continues on the facilities at Northwich and Widnes police stations. Clear testament that we are investing in our future. Overall, the message is more bobbies on the beat, better equipped than ever, working from a refreshed estate, sharing a renewed commitment to policing locally. No waving or worries about a fire brigade response. Instead patrol visibility boosted by further investment in iPads with an innovative contract with BT to make sure we use the latest technology to push information to our staff and keep them on the streets when you need to see them most!
No police station closures either. We’ve got some anxiety however in some parts of the county by the idea of moving to a centralised deployment base for officers to patrol from. I understand the concerns, but we are trading off higher police numbers, better briefing and more consistent leadership with the fact that officers will not always start off their shift at some of the smaller stations that we use. But to re-emphasise, they are not closing. The latest technology means we can monitor our deployment patterns to keep our presence high in areas where we need to tackle crime and anti-social behaviour.
There is really lots going on in the force at the moment that I’m really excited about and over the next few weeks you’ll hear more from us as we share with you how policing is being re shaped across Cheshire.