Kentish Express Ashford & District - - Danger Warnings -

The force says the cladding is in­spected on a monthly ba­sis and loose ma­te­rial is iden­ti­fied and re­moved.

It says the scaf­fold­ing is not pro­vid­ing any sup­port to keep the build­ing stand­ing, and say the over­all build­ing is struc­turally sound.

Di­vi­sional Com­man­der Ch Supt An­drea Bishop said: “A struc­tural sur­vey of the build­ing has iden­ti­fied that the ex­ter­nal con­crete cladding is de­te­ri­o­rat­ing rapidly and is ap­proach­ing the end of its ser­vice­able life.

“Al­though main­te­nance is on­go­ing to en­sure the build­ing re­mains safe, a de­ci­sion has yet to be taken on the longterm fu­ture of the build­ing.

“To re-clad and re-glaze the en­tire build­ing would cost a great deal of money and we are in the process of eval­u­at­ing whether this would be eco­nom­i­cally vi­able. We are also con­sid­er­ing a num­ber of other op­tions.”

The Po­lice and Crime Com­mis­sioner’s (PCC) chief fi­nance of­fi­cer Rob Phillips said the fi­nal de­ci­sion about the sta­tion’s fu­ture will be made by the com­mis­sioner Matthew Scott.

Mr Phillips said: “We have a duty to the pub­lic to make sure all build­ings are cost ef­fec­tive and rep­re­sent value for money.

“The com­mis­sioner has asked the force to come for­ward with a pro­posal, con­sult­ing with an ex­ten­sive range of stake­hold­ers, be­fore a de­ci­sion is taken in due course.

“Our es­tate plays a key role in de­liv­er­ing ef­fec­tive and ef­fi­cient polic­ing for the peo­ple of Kent and all de­ci­sions are made on the ba­sis of com­mu­nity need, use, op­er­a­tional ef­fec­tive­ness and ef­fi­ciency, and op­por­tu­ni­ties to share ac­com­mo­da­tion with part­ner agen­cies.

“The com­mis­sioner has made it clear that re­tain­ing a polic­ing fa­cil­ity in Ash­ford is a red line and he will only agree to a plan which does not re­sult in a diminu­tion of ser­vice to the pub­lic.”

Chief su­per­in­ten­dent An­drea Bishop

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