Residents use new law to fight cop shop closure
Community Council want to be part of decision
Cambuslang residents have asked Police Scotland for proof that closure of the town’s police station is not “inevitable”.
Cambuslang Community Council has questioned the legitimacy of the consultation on the future of the station because it only considers one option – to close and sell the Tabernacle Street building.
And the group has used the Community Empowerment Act to ask Police Scotland to formally involve them in “any assessments, discussions and decisions” made on the future of the station.
Police Scotland confirmed in November it was reviewing its estate, later suggesting the closure of the Cambuslang station, with staff to relocate to Rutherglen.
David Thomson, chairman of the community council, said he had been in regular correspondence with Chief Inspector Geraldine McSherry, area commander of the Lanarkshire Division.
He said: “We found CI McSherry’s reply to us rather disingenuous. In her recent letter, she is now claiming the closure of Cambuslang Police Station is just a ‘suggestion’ and one of a ‘number of options’, and moreover that ‘no decision has been made’.
“We find this difficult to believe given that her original letter to us was very specific about only one option, which is closure.”
Mr Thomson and his colleagues’ latest efforts to fight the proposal include a request to become formally involved in the decision making process.
They have done this through the Community Empowerment Act, designed to give people a stronger voice in decisions that matter to them.
Mr Thomson added: “We recognise Police Scotland are under financial pressure and we are open to discussing alternative options for a physical presence in Cambuslang town centre such as an office in one of the vacant retail units on the Main Street. The key issue is that the future of policing in Cambuslang is agreed with the community – not decided elsewhere and then notified to the community.”
Inspector James Gillespie of Rutherglen Police Station said: “It is important that the buildings we have continue to meet our needs and the needs of the public.
“Having buildings in Lanarkshire from which we can operate more effectively will ensure officers are available in the right time and right place whilst continuing to deliver a quality service to local communities.
“Any future decisions around our local estate in Lanarkshire will only be made following engagement with communities and partners.
“We welcome interest in our engagement process from our partners and communities as they help to inform the decision-making process.
“We can confirm we have received a participation request under the Community Empowerment (Scotland) Act 2015 from Cambuslang Community Council
CambuslangCommunity councillors want a say on the future of the station