More police stations to be sold off across Merseyside

Heswall and Garston stations have already been discarded with more due to follow.

Four police stations across Merseyside are in the process of being disposed of by the region’s force.

Approval has been granted by Emily Spurrell, Merseyside Police and Crime Commissioner, for four sites across the region, deemed to be surplus to requirements, to be sold off by Merseyside Police. The jettisoning of police stations is in line with its estates strategy, a report to the Merseyside police and crime panel revealed.

Heswall and Garston stations have already been done away with while it is anticipated that Ainsdale and Thatto Heath sites will follow suit in due course. The report said: “ The Police and Crime Commissioner continually works with colleagues in Mersey Police’s Estates Team to establish the best use of her estate, and will continue to review the strategy in light of external developments.

Questioned on the provision of a community station in Garston following the disposal during a meeting of the panel on Thursday, Mrs Spurrell said the force was working with the NHS to identify another suitable location, having previously provided officers space in Garston Hospital. She said officers were aware of the need to continue to be visible in the community but “hands are tied” on a timescale.

It is understood to be the Commissioner’s intention to conduct a formal review of the current estate strategy next year. The report, discussed by panel members at Knowsley Council’s offices in Huyton on Thursday, also detailed how progress remains ongoing around further community locations.

It said a proposed site within the wider Alder Hey estate has been subject to legal negotiations, however it is expected that building work will commence shortly. It added: “Additionally, work to establish a Community Police Station within the Merseytravel site in Queens Square is ongoing subject to approval of a sub-lease arrangement with the PCC.

“Plans in relation to Huyton Police Station are subject to wider consideration as part of the proposed comprehensive Estate Strategy Review in 2023, however discussions are being progressed with Knowlsey Metropolitan Borough Council in relation to their wider master planning work for the town to ensure necessary coordination.

“Halewood Community Police Station remains an operational site for a number of teams within Merseyside Police, however concerns have been raised regarding accessibility for the public.”

Work is also ongoing in relation to Granby Street Community Police Station. A project is underway to ascertain the most advantageous option to either improve the existing site, or to consider alternative locations.

John Riley, chief finance officer, for the PCC, said there was “no obvious solution in sight” at this stage.