Closure threat over two police stations as review is launched

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Police stations in Cardenden and Burntisland look set to be closed to the public following a review of counter services by Police Scotland.

They are among a number of stations in Fife which have been earmarked for closure or to operate reduced opening hours.

The police station in Kirkcaldy is unaffected by the proposals and will remain open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Police Scotland says the closures are in response to a drop in the number of people using counter services at police stations, but Burntisland councillor Susan Leslie is concerned about the proposals.

She said: “On the face of it this seems a short-sighted decision that would make it harder for people in Fife to get help from police officers when they need it.

“In the case of Burntisland, the decision to cut the public counter service was based on just three days of observation. This will be a major blow to people in Burntisland and Kinghorn.”

Mid Scotland and Fife MSP Liz Smith is also critical of the proposals.

She said: “This will clearly impact on community policing and ultimately many people will see this leading to local police stations being closed.

“This is yet another example of the SNP centralisation of our police services and is the start of a slippery slope to removing local policing.”

Assistant Chief Constable Wayne Mawson, who has led the review, said the public accessed police services in many ways, but the number of people calling at public counters had dropped considerably in recent years.

He added: “Our review will reduce opening hours at some public counters but this is where analysis of demand has provided evidence which has allowed us to take these steps without significantly impacting on the level of service enjoyed by communities.”

“Keeping people safe is the focus of Police Scotland and this is an opportunity to deliver a more consistent, professional service, which will enable more officers to be deployed where and when they are needed the most in communities.”