A NEW police centre will be opened in Patchway by the end of September – marking the end of the Avon and Somerset force's programme to centralise the custody service.

A new centre with an enquiry office, which is open to the public, will be housed on the A38 near Airbus and Rolls-Royce and will be open from 8am to 8pm, seven days a week.

It will be one of three to open in the force area. Another centre, with an enquiry office, will be opened at Bridgwater and a further centre will be opened at Keynsham, however that one will not have an enquiry office.

The new centres will increase the capacity of the constabulary in custody by 27 per cent, improving the custody process and enabling more police officers to go back on patrol.

Avon and Somerset Police and Crime Commissioner Sue Mountstevens said: “The opening of these new modern police centres marks the end of a long journey to transform the police estate and make it fit for a new generation of policing.

"Many police stations are outdated, inefficient and under-utilised. These new buildings are not only greener, more sustainable and more cost efficient, they are also flexible enough to meet the future demands that Avon and Somerset Constabulary will face over the coming years.

“I am delighted that throughout this development we have been able to offer apprenticeships, opportunities for ex-offenders and school visits.

“There have also been many local economic benefits with 77 per cent of subcontractors based within 35 miles of each of the sites, or within the Avon and Somerset area."

Acting Chief Constable John Long said: “The new police centres enable us to respond to the needs of modern policing. Replacing small, inefficient buildings with larger centres where we can centralise custody and locate our teams together, helps us to work in a new and more efficient way.

“These police centres will assist us as we continue to face financial pressures.

“It also increases the potential for integrated working by co-locating with our partners, as we have already started in Weston-super-Mare, Mendip and Keynsham.”