Police stations will stay open

Hailsham police station to close
Hailsham police station to close
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Hailsham and Polegate police stations are set to stay open after Sussex Police announced it was closing 18 stations across the county.

The stations earmarked for closure will be replaced with front desks and offices inside its partner organisations, such as libraries and other public and private buildings.

But Hailsham and Polegate police stations are set to remain open in both towns.

It follows a review of more than 100 Sussex Police buildings.

The force has to save £50million by 2015.

The report - Sussex Police Estates and Facilities Department Estates Strategy 2013-2018 - said other police stations in Wealden, including Uckfield, Heathfield, Crowborough and neighbouring Newhaven, Peacehaven and Eastbourne police station on Grove Road, would close and services be re-provided at alternative locations.

Some of the sites, including Lewes head quarters, will benefit from a £39.7 million investment while other stations will be redeveloped.

Stations to be redeveloped include Hammond’s Drive Operational Base in Eastbourne.

Bases at Sussex House and Slaugham Manor will be closed and 360 staff transferred to Lewes.

The plan said the Lewes site will be reduced by 6,000sqm within the next five years to provide better value for money .

Sussex Police and Crime Commissioner Katy Bourne said the five year plan was about making the best of resources and bringing policing back to the heart of the community in Sussex.

She said: “We’ve conducted a complete review to ensure the Sussex Police estate is fit for purpose and fit for the future.

“In the 21st century people access police services in many different ways and so we are looking to reduce the number of out-dated and expensive police stations.

“We will replace them with community hubs and public contact points where a number of public services can be accessed in one location, like the example in Broadfield Library in Crawley and the Town Hall in Hove.

“It is about putting policing back at the heart of the community.

“The five year plan is about making the best use of our resources and ensuring we have buildings that maximise the use of technology and are easily accessible for the public. This may well mean investing in certain parts of the estate to ensure we fulfil the needs of the public.”

What do you think about the police station closures? Email sussex.express@jpress.co.uk