Postcard survey gathers public opinion over police station plans

Almost 17,000 postcard surveys have been issued across Nottinghamshire to generate public feedback on plans to revise police stations and front counter services in the county.

The pocket-sized questionnaire asks the public about their use of local police stations and how they feel about proposals to retain front counter services - with consistent opening times - at 18 key stations rather than the current 42.

Hundreds of residents have already filled out a postcard at community meetings, county events and Police Authority stands at local shows and from this week anyone who has not filled out the survey can now pick up a postcard in dozens of libraries and police stations across the county and City.

Cllr Glynn Gilfoyle, vice chairman of Nottinghamshire Police Authority, said: “As the Police Authority has previously stressed, no decision has been made yet on these proposals and we are relying on the public to help us build a bigger picture. We are keen to find out about their preferred way of communicating with the police and whether they support the proposals, which have been drawn up as part of our savings plans, before making any judgement on the issue.

“Postcards are available at libraries and police stations across Nottinghamshire and we would appeal for any resident who has not yet taken the opportunity to put their views forward to pick up a postcard from one of the many venues available.”

The postcard survey, which is a replica of the online version, asks residents to pinpoint the last time they visited a police station and asks them for what reason as well as what they considered more important; retaining police officers or police stations.

The initiative is part of a major consultation exercise to gauge public feeling on the proposals, which are one of many measures outlined by the force in its bid to identify £43m of savings following a funding shortfall from the Government.

Under the plans, 12 stations which are hardly ever used by the public will be closed. Officers from six of these will move into alternative community premises nearby, while the remainder will see officers relocated back to the nearest available station.

The plans mean that everyone in Nottinghamshire will be within a 20-minute journey (or eight mile radius) of a front counter and a neighbourhood policing team.

The Police Authority will report back the results of the consultation later in the year before any final decision is made.