The Police and Crime Commissioner for West Midlands Police has been accused of running down services in Solihull to spend more money in Birmingham.

Julian Knight, Conservative MP for Solihull, highlighted the planned closure of Solihull Police Station, due to shut its doors in 2020, as an example.

David Jamieson, the West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) says that a "publicly accessible police station" will replace it, at a Solihull location yet to be decided.

And Mr Jamieson, a Labour politician, said cuts to the police service were a result in cuts in funding from the Conservative Government.

Mr Knight said there had been a "a spate of terrifying armed carjackings across the wider borough of Solihull".

And he highlighted the shooting of a 15-year-old boy and a man in broad daylight in Olton, Solihull, on May 11.

Mr Knight said: "In Solihull, too often all we get from the police and crime commissioner is excuses. I know from speaking to people on doorstep that local residents are deeply concerned by persistent rounds of cuts to local frontline policing, and they do not understand how the PCC justifies it."

Solihull MP Julian Knight

He added: "People are also furious at the decision to sell off our town’s last police station, with no commitment that the money raised will be reinvested directly in policing in the town."

Mr Knight said: "I have also been given assurances by the chief constable that there is an intention to effectively migrate services to another front desk in the constituency, particularly in the town centre. However, the reality is that the services in the main police station have been wound down over time.

"That is key when it comes to intelligence, which is vital in combating knife crime and serious violent crime."

 

And he said: "The concentration of police resources in Birmingham has continued despite the Government providing a funding boost to the West Midlands police."

Mr Knight was backed by Sajid Javid, the Home Secretary. Speaking in the House of Commons, Mr Javid said: "He talks about the West Midlands, which has one of the forces that is most affected by serious violence.

"I have met the force’s leaders a number of times. He is right to question whether funding is being spent properly and appropriately."

Home Secretary Sajid Javid during a visit in Northfield
Home Secretary Sajid Javid during a visit in Northfield

Mr Jamieson said: "Julian knows full-well that a publicly accessible police station will be retained in the heart of Solihull.

"We are having to make changes to our estate to save money to balance the books after the cuts we’ve endured from his government, that he voted for. Despite that officers will still be based in the heart of the town and the public will still have access via a front desk."

 

He added: "Julian should remember that the more he talks about crime and policing the worse it is for him. His government have cut West Midlands Police harder than anywhere else and now he complains about rising crime."