Site earmarked for police centre
A NEW police investigation centre could be built in Huntingdon – as part of a £55 million project to serve police forces in Cambridgeshire, Norfolk and Suffolk. There will be nine centres across the three counties, each with a cell block and interview roo
A NEW police investigation centre could be built in Huntingdon - as part of a £55 million project to serve police forces in Cambridgeshire, Norfolk and Suffolk.
There will be nine centres across the three counties, each with a cell block and interview rooms.
Some of the centres will be shared by the three forces, none of which wanted to merge in Government proposals for amalgamation, which have now been dropped.
The project would replace cells at Huntingdon police station with facilities at a new site in Latham Road on Huntingdon's industrial estate.
A planning application for the scheme, which would be funded through a private finance initiative, has been made to Huntingdonshire District Council.
The other Cambridgeshire suites are proposed for Bretton Gate in Peterborough and at a location still to be decided in South Cambridgeshire.
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Superintendent Julian Eales, head of custody at Cambridgeshire Police, said it was essential to have a modern, purpose-built building.
He said it would be difficult to expand facilities at Huntingdon police station or bring them up to standard to last for the next 25 years and cater for the increase in prisoners.
Supt Eales said: "This will be a modern facility which will benefit both staff and prisoners."
He reassured residents the new unit would deal only with the type of prisoners currently dealt with at Huntingdon police station. When the project was disclosed at King's Lynn in Norfolk, residents said they were worried about dangerous criminals.
Supt Eales said: "If anything, the increased police presence in the area should make it safer."
The nine centres are expected to be in use by 2009.