Police in a Fylde town are searching for new premises to ensure they have a presence there – after bosses confirmed the police station would be lost for good.
Fylde’s new head of police, Insp Mark Thackeray-Scott, said Lytham Police Station in Clifton Street would close completely “in the coming months”, but would look at other facilities in the town for his officers to use as a base if made available at no cost.
The station was one of 14 to shut its front counter in 2012 as part of police funding cuts, but Insp Thackeray-Scott said he was open to a new base in the town, which suffered an increase in crime last year.
The 47-year-old added: “The situation at Lytham is that the police station has been closed for some time. It is still operating as a base. Police officers can call in on shift.
“When the rent is due up on that (base) the officers won’t have that facility to use.
“The building will be completely empty and we will have to look to work with local people in the community.
“But if people say we can use other premises, we are happy to look at that. We have to be a bit proactive to think where we go.
“With the cuts, Lancashire Constabulary is about to lose £60m and has £20m more to find. I can’t see how we can find another base at cost, unless we were offered a free facility.”
Last year, the town’s Santander Bank was targeted twice in two armed raids, while a spate of thefts took place from homes in the town.
Following a Freedom of Information request for the period September 1 to December 1 last year, it was revealed police reported 154 instances of burglary and robbery in Fylde compared with 86 for the same period in 2012.
The figures for Lytham, St Annes and Kirkham showed burglaries had more than doubled from 28 to 69, with burglaries from other dwellings, such as sheds and garages, increasing from 55 to 75.
Chairman of the Lytham Business Partnership Andrew Fallow said it was important the town did not gain a reputation as a “soft touch”.
He added: “We have no police station and we have not got a tourist information centre in town. We do have a little area in the Heritage Centre in Henry Street which could be used.”