Northamptonshire Police announce 'British Gas style' appointment service for non-emergency 999 calls
Northamptonshire Police will soon visit non-emergency 999 callers at scheduled appointments in a service 'akin to British Gas.'
Residents will be able to arrange to see officers at a time and place of their choosing for up to two hours for help with non-emergency matters.
The 'Managed Appointment Unit' scheme was announced at a press conference at Northamptonshire Police Headquarters at Wootton Hall, in Wootton Hall Park, off Mere Way, yesterday (March 6) as part of a new 'service delivery model.'
Chief Constable Simon Edens said: "Through the Managed Appointment Unit, Northamptonshire Police can provide a response when and where residents need it at a time that suits them.
"When a call for the police comes through, we respond very quickly in order to protect Northamptonshire's residents. But we are sometimes called to situations that just aren't emergencies.
"To deal with these situations, we will now meet people at an appointment slot, in a service almost akin to British Gas.
"Specially-resourced police officers working in a team will deal with anything people want to raise with us at a time and place that is convinient for them in slots that can last up to two hours.
"This will be beneficial to our officers on patrol who respond to 999 calls and who are having to respond to matters that aren't emergencies that can get in the way. Through this, we can deploy officers better through prioritising incidents.
"It's one of the services we are introducing as part of our new demand-led Service Delivery Model, which has been designed following detailed analysis of the county's needs and will increase capacity to invesitage crimes and allow a greater focus on community policing."
The new Service Delivery Model and the appointment scheme will be funded as part of a revised agreement with the Education Funding Agency.
It was made possible following a u-turn on plans for the force to move to new headquarters in Kettering in a process which could have cost up to £20million.
Instead, the joint Northamptonshire Police and Fire Headquarters will remain at the existing site at Wootton Hall.
Chief Constable Edens said: "We could have spent the best part of £20million moving to Kettering and would not have had much to show for it. By staying on this site, we can build and refurbish the existing headquarters for far less than £20milllion, saving us money which can be used to roll out the new Service Delivery Model."