Is our Police Station about to be sold off?

It would seem that the building in Spratt Hall Road is worth some where in the region of £3-5 million – an attractive prospect for the cash-strapped Metropolitan Police.

A 2007 report commissioned by the Met said the station was “underused” and was a prime target to be “sold off”.

The Borough Commander admitted in 2010 that there were no “imminent” plans to sell the station, which means there are plans to sell it, but they are not yet in place.

Whilst we all realise that police need modern working facilities and are in desperate need of funds, there are some very salient points that need answering.

When the station was re-opened in 2004/5 crime fell by 23% in Wanstead.

The nearest police station after Spratt Hall Road is Woodford, or Ilford. This means increased response times.

If Wanstead were to close, the London Borough of Redbridge – which has over 268,000 people living in it – would be reduced to 3 police stations. That’s 1 police station for every 90,000 residents!

At weekends, only Ilford and Barkingside stations are open 24 hours as it is.

Closing the station before the Olympics would seem unlikely, but not impossible.

Wanstead has lost nearly all of its major community facilities. The fire station went many years ago, the hospital went in the 1990s – and what there is of it that’s left, looks likely to go as well. The police station is the last reaming facility still operating. We have no other public facilities running in the buildings or places they were designed for.

The Wanstead Society has little doubt that there is a long fight ahead of it, and as such, is teaming up with the Counties Residents Association to see if we can get any more info, which we will pass on.  So watch this space and have this one on your radar!

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