Police merge major units in a bid to save cash

PUBLISHED: 16:39 24 April 2012

CAMBRIDGESHIRE and Hertfordshire police have merged forensic, armed and major crimes units with Bedfordshire’s force to save money.

The move will reduce their combined budgets by £30million in the next three years.

At the beginning of April, the joint scientific services unit was established in Sandy, Bedfordshire, to provide forensic support to all three forces. This will save the three forces £1.1m a year.

Armed police will be based at Hinchingbrooke, Kempston, in Bedfordshire, and Welwyn Garden City, in Hertfordshire. Officers will focus on their areas but could be called to the other counties if required.

The major crimes unit will investigate murder, manslaughter, attempted murder, kidnap, extortion and other serious crimes. It will be based at Hinchingbrooke and Welwyn Garden City.

It’s expected the three forces will save more than £1.2m across these two merged units.

Chief constable of Cambridgeshire police, Simon Parr, said: “Although there will be a lot for us all to get used to as these changes settle in I am certain that we will succeed. Together with Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire we are on target to take almost £30m out of our collective budgets over the next three years and these savings will be crucial to allowing each force to maintain delivery of frontline policing in the face of significant financial challenges.”

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