Forest Row police box closed

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RESIDENTS have bid a fond farewell to a police box which served Forest Row for 30 years. The box was officially closed last month.

The minute building served as a crime investigation hub for villagers.

But they can rest assured their queries and concerns will be met just as efficiently in the future.

Wealden district commander, chief inspector Dick Coates said: “I want to reassure local residents that their neighbourhood policing team is not leaving the village, but will move into the local council offices in Forest Row Community Centre.

“This will allow people easier access to the policing team which is made even better by the council having access to the PCSO’s diaries.

“Also, the old police box was only open by appointment while the new offices will be open from nine to four Monday to Friday, so people can talk face to face with council staff or make an appointment to see their local officer.

“This partnership working responds to the wish expressed by everyone that they want access to police as a priority. The move is possible thanks to an excellent working partnership between the Parish Council and Sussex Police.

“It has always been vital that police maintain a presence in the village, and with the full support and help of the council this has been achieved.”

Rodabe Rudin from Forest Row Parish Council said: “When we were informed of the closure of the police box, the parish council were determined to find a solution that would enable Forest Row residents to enjoy the continued presence of police officers and the security of knowing that there was somewhere they could go to. Working with the police, rather than complaining, has ensured that we have ended up with a win/win situation, with the community enjoying an enhanced service.”

Chief inspector Coates continued: “The spending review has made us all look at working closer together and this initiative stems from that.

“The close links between the town council and police have allowed us to enhance our service to the community and at the same time forge even greater working relationships with our partners in the council.”