12th January 2016
A review by West Midlands Police has revealed a need for tighter security measures at a town’s police station. As a result, Wednesbury Police Station will have high security, perimeter fencing installed after the review described its open car park as being “vulnerable to attack”.
The new measures will include security fencing, ranging from 2.4 m to 2.8 m high, to protect the rear of the Holyhead Road station. A new car park barrier will also be installed in an effort to beef up security.
The decision to carry out the work was part of a regional review of police stations in the West Midlands. A statement from West Midlands Police revealed how all the region’s police stations were making increased security “a priority” for 2016.
Describing the measures as “a necessity”, the statement added that full-height security fencing and a controlled barrier with grilles would secure the station, providing increased protection for the police officers and civilian staff.
Currently, the car park at the rear is open. The perimeter fencing will span the boundary of the car park. The land is not level, hence the different heights of the fencing. The existing lay-out of the area will remain unchanged, as the fencing will be erected behind the landscaping. The access point of the car park will also be unaltered, as the proposals are aimed solely at improving security of the rear car park.
West Midlands Police spokesperson Hannah Fitzgerald said a review of security, conducted in 2015, had revealed the need for the security fencing. She explained how the police force had sought planning permission for the works.
West Midlands Police has suffered recently under cost-cutting measures. It is having to close several police stations from 31st January to comply with budget cuts of £6.8 million. Five police stations in Dudley will be the first to be axed. The first to be closed down will be Netherton, followed by Halesowen, Dudley, Kingswinford and Stourbridge. Six more police stations, in Wolverhampton and Smethwick, are earmarked for closure in the near future.
The security review of those police stations which are to remain open was carried out to ensure the safety of all the officers and staff.