Police station front desk could close

Wigan Police Station
Wigan Police Station

A police station front desk in Leigh is under threat of closure.

The public counter at Leigh Police Station on Chapel Street, appears on a list of force bases whose futures are in doubt because they are deemed to be under-used.

Leigh Police Station, Chapel Street

Leigh Police Station, Chapel Street

A consultation has been launched in which residents can air their views on the usefulness of such services these days.

There was a time when Wigan borough had a dozen front counters, with stations in every sizeable community. But back in the 1990s there was a major review of force building stock which decided that resources would be better spent on keeping front line staff on patrol rather than propping up ageing and under-used premises.

Many closed, and further counters have gone since under streamlining of services to the point that there are only two left.

Force chiefs today said that demand at a number of public inquiry counters is “low” and that 10 out of 22 in the force area - including Wigan and Leigh - are under review. But they stress that nothing has been decided and all options remain open.

The consultation runs until September 26 and will include a survey, public feedback sessions and meetings with partners and stakeholders across Greater Manchester. No date has been set for a verdict, a spokeswoman saying the decision-making process will be influenced greatly by the results of the consulatation.

The survey is available online and in some public inquiry counters with questions focusing on how often someone has contacted the force and the method through which they did so. It will also ask whether they have used social media or the force’s website to contact the force and how often they use public inquiry counters.

Assistant Chief Constable Rob Potts said: “This is a really important step in making sure our services match the needs of the people that we serve.

“The views of people are an important part of developing services for the future and it’s absolutely crucial that we work with the people of Greater Manchester to provide contact methods that work best for them. It’s also important that our resources are appropriately allocated.”

To take part in the survey visit https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/GMPconsultationsurvey.