As part of a radical reform announced by Norfolk’s Chief Constable, officers currently based at the police station in Market Place, Reepham, will be relocated to share premises with Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service, presumably at Reepham Fire Station in School Road.
At the same time, Norfolk will become the first county to axe Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs), although the number of police officers will be increased by around 80.
The measures are expected to save £2m a year and come into effect from next April after consultation with Norfolk Constabulary staff.
As well as scrapping all 150 PCSOs across Norfolk, the proposals include shutting public enquiry offices at seven police stations, with the loss of 26 jobs, and closing seven other stations, as well as moving a further seven police stations, including Reepham.
Two new police investigation hubs will be created – one in Swaffham and one at Broadland Gate Business Park – to deal with more safeguarding investigations. These centres are due to open in 2019.
Chief Constable Simon Bailey (pictured) said: “These are radical plans which come at a critical time when the police service is facing unparalleled growth in complex crime together with reduced policing budgets.
“This has been the most extensive review in the force’s history. Adapting our existing structure was not an option, which has resulted in plans that include the removal of the PCSO role within neighbourhood policing, reduction of public enquiry offices and police station closures.
“These are difficult decisions and I’m acutely aware of the impact this will have on individuals directly affected and the communities they serve.
“Change on this scale is challenging, but my priority as ever is to make sure we continue to deliver a responsive, relevant and viable police service for the people of Norfolk.”