Police pledge over traffic service as 36 posts are axed

Fewer traffic officers will patrol Cambridgeshire’s roads under plans to save £20 million across three forces.

Cambridgeshire Police Authority yesterday approved plans to axe 28 constables and eight sergeants across Cambs, Herts and Beds and make five staff redundant.

The meeting heard the plans were in line with the force’s overall objective to meet demand 80 per cent of the time.

As part of the business case fewer officers would police the roads and traffic management could be taken out of the hands of police officers and given to civilian staff.

Deputy Chief Constable John Fevyour told the meeting the same service should be delivered.

He said: “We believe this will give us what we’ve got now, but there will be 28 fewer constables. An 80 per cent delivery is a standard rate. We can make savings and still deliver the same service.”

It was also revealed the main base for traffic officers would be in St Ives rather than in Herts or Beds.

Ruth Rogers, the authority’s chairman, said: “I am pleased to see that the base will be in St Ives.”

A forces spokeswoman said: “We already have a joint road policing function for Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire and proposals have now been developed for a three-force function which would also include Cambridgeshire.

“A business case outlining those proposals has already been considered by Bedfordshire’s and Hertfordshire’s full police authorities, who gave their in-principle approval.”

The cost-cutting collaboration could also mean plans to combine the three forces’ sniffer dog teams.

The move has been opposed by Hertfordshire and Cambridgeshire Police Federation leaders who fear the dogs will be too tired to carry out their tasks if they are required to travel big distances across the three counties.

Cambridgeshire police has also announced proposals to sell off land and some police stations.

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