Petition to save police station passes thousand mark (From East London and West Essex Guardian Series)
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Petition to save Woodford Police Station in High Road, Woodford Green, gaining widespread support
A PETITION calling for Woodford Police Station to be saved from closure has been signed by 1,200 people.
Borough Commander Sue Williams recently warned that the station, along with the one in Wanstead, are unlikely to survive a sell-off of Met buildings to cut costs.
The stations were not included on a list of buildings which are likely to be sold off last month, but the future remains uncertain as more disposals have been promised after London Mayor Boris Johnson ordered a £500million cut to the force's budget by 2015.
Politicians and community group insist Woodford Police Station must be saved to act as a deterrent to criminals and maintain community access to officers.
Despite the cuts being ordered by his Tory colleague at City Hall, MP Iain Duncan Smith is backing the campaign to save the station.
Speaking before a meeting with councillors and residents on Friday, he said: "Boris Johnson needs to make cuts, but this issue pops up year in year out and is one we constantly fight.
"We are a long way from Ilford and it is difficult to understand what the response time will be from there."
Cllr Jim O'Shea added: "The thought of us being policed from Barkingside fills us with horror."
People living near the station said the Met should look at alternative savings.
James Godlonton, 76, of Firs Walk, Woodford Green, said: "I think it is shocking that front line services are being cut.
"We should be cutting their pensions and their expenses, not selling our police stations."
And Monkhams Neighbourhood Watch co-ordinator Lori Shearer, who organised the petition, has criticised spending on the election of police commissioners in other parts of the country.
She said: "I feel we are being sacrificed to pay for political positions which we don't get a say on.
"We don't want to save money to make money for someone in an office somewhere."
The petition is set to be delivered to City Hall next week.
A petition against the closure of Wanstead Police Station has been signed by 3,500 people.
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