Home is where the heart is for Staple Hill police
Published on: 03 Dec 2015
STAPLE Hill’s police team say they are glad to be based back in the area after an absence of more than two years.
The team moved to a temporary home at Kingswood Civic Centre during building work to transform the old police station in Broad Street into housing for the elderly.
The former Court House, which is part of the old station, didn’t form part of housing plans and was always intended to be kept as a base for local police.
Although the revamped Court House won’t be open to members of the public, it will mean that officers are much closer to the area they serve and will be able to respond to incidents much quicker.
PCSO Jonathan Bourke said there are 12 officers, including community support officers, a beat manager and a sergeant, who will operate out of the base, although not all at the same time because of shift patterns.
He said: “It’s fantastic. We’re now back at the heart of Staple Hill, as we were in the past. It feels like being back home.
“Half of the old Staple Hill police station, which were where our custody suites were, has been demolished and we’re now in the old magistrates court, which has been refurbished inside with new locker rooms, kitchen and toilets.”
PCSO Bourke said having a direct presence in Staple Hill will act as reassurance for residents and shopkeepers.
“It means we’re a lot more accessible to the High Street and to help members of the public in Staple Hill and Mangotsfield. Being back in Staple Hill is just as important to us as it is to members of the community. We’re much happier now we are closer to Staple Hill and can help the public feel safe and be safe.
“It’s solely a neighbourhood police post so it won’t necessarily be manned all the time as we will be out patrolling the beat. If members of the public need to speak to somebody, we’re advising them to use the enquiries desk at Kingswood Civic Centre or use the 101 number. People can also go online on the Avon and Somerset police website and email any queries directly to ourselves.”
The rest of the site, which will be known as William Page Court, is being developed by McCarthy and Stone and will comprise of 43 ‘Retirement Living’ apartments for people aged over 60.
The one and two bedroomed properties will be privately owned and will offer “the independence of retaining home ownership while living in an apartment specifically designed for later life”.
Facilities include a shared lounge, guest suite, laundry room and lift. There will be a house manager, security entrance system and 24-hour emergency call points.
The first occupant is expected to move in during spring 2016.