Warwickshire Police and Crime Commissioner Ron Ball has issued a stark warning against taking the ‘nuclear’ option of creating super-forces across the country.
He raised concerns in response to calls made by Bernard Hogan-Howe, commissioner for the Metropolitan Police, for the culling of more than 30 forces in England and Wales to create nine regional ‘super-forces’.
Mr Ball said: “There is no doubt that police forces are going to continue to face financial challenges, and that efficiency savings will need to be made. To that extent, I am in agreement with Bernard Hogan-Howe.
“Where we part company however, is over his proposal for nine ‘super-forces’. They may well qualify as ‘super’ in terms of size, land area and budget, but whether they would be judged as such in terms of service offered to the public may well be completely different.
“The Strategic Alliance between Warwickshire and West Mercia Police is achieving the vast majority of savings that would be achieved through a merger, without sacrificing the element that a lot of senior police officers overlook - local democratic accountability.
“We need to find ways of making the public relate more closely to the police.”