• new Community Police hub in Rainford.

    St Helens North MP Conor McGinn joined Merseyside’s Police Commissioner Jane Kennedy to open a new Community Police Station in Rainford.

    Community Police Stations are designed to be accessible, visible centres which are co-located with partners in busy neighbourhood hubs which are already well used by the communities they serve. They are a key part of the strategy to transform Merseyside Police’s stations with the aim of saving £2.5m on running costs every year, money which can be redirected straight into frontline policing.

    Jane said: “I’m delighted that we have now opened the doors to this Community Police Station in Rainford and my thanks to Conor McGinn for working with me on this.

    “We are not hiding the fact that these changes are driven by austerity. Merseyside Police’s workforce has been cut by nearly a quarter since 2010 and the pressures they face continue to grow. That means the Force has to work more smartly and efficiently than ever before and Community Police Stations are designed to help neighbourhood officers be closer to the communities they serve, while also reducing our annual running costs.

    “The Chief Constable and I remain committed to providing a visible and accessible police force, as best we can with the resources we have available. While the service we can offer has changed, I think Rainford Village Hall is an excellent location for a Community Police Station. It will put the neighbourhood team right at the heart of the community in a busy location which is clearly really popular with local people, is already used for a host of activities and events and which has been recommended by local councillors. I hope it will be a real asset to the community.”

    Conor McGinn MP said: “It is vitally important that our towns and villages have a visible and responsive policing presence and the reopening of Rainford Station, even on a limited basis, is recognition of the need for police officers to be in our communities and working with our communities.

    “I am grateful to the Police Commissioner for her strong leadership and engagement with me and St Helens Council in ensuring that we meet the policing needs of local people in tackling crime and keeping them safe.

    “The consequences of central government-imposed cuts to Mersey Police have been felt acutely in St Helens over the last number of years. The Commissioner, the Council and I will continue to work together to mitigate the effects of continuing cuts across Merseyside, and to ensure visible, responsive and well-resourced policing across St Helens North from Billinge to Newton and Parr to Rainford.”

    The Community Police Station in Rainford will be open on a regular, but not continuous basis and will include public meeting rooms and facilities from which officers can parade on. It will not house any custody suites or cells. Surgeries will be publicised at the centre, on local billboards and through the Force’s website.