‘Increase in police is not feasible’ – Met Police respond to council leader’s plea

The Met Police has responded after an open letter from the leader of Richmond Council called for an increase in officer presence.

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In the letter Cllr Gareth Roberts said that as a direct result of the closure of Sovereign Gate, crime had spiked across Richmond borough.

He goes on to say that even though the crime rate in Richmond is low, the fear of crime can be as powerful as being a victim of crime.

A spokeswoman from the Met Police told the Richmond and Twickenham Times: “We are aware of the concerns of residents and have responded directly to the letter from Councillor Roberts.

“At this time, a dedicated town centre team for Richmond is not feasible but work remains ongoing around the dedicated ward officer hub project.”

In his letter, Cllr Roberts outlines the uniqueness of the borough, which is the only London borough situated on both sides of the River Thames, and how having the only manned police station in Twickenham (on one side of the River) gives residents on the Richmond side of the River a feeling of isolation from their main police station.

The Met Police continued: “We currently have two dedicated ward officers covering the South Richmond ward. They work very closely not only with other teams such as the burglary and robbery investigation team and our youth engagement officers, but also liaise regularly with the local authority.

“These partnerships have resulted in a significant reduction in robbery offences in the area over recent months and we continually monitor the demands on our resources and review our policing model accordingly.”

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