Featherstone in demand for 24-hour crime

Should I find myself in need of entertainment of an evening, I often have a quick flick through Lynne Featherstone’s blog (Lib-Dem MP for Hornsey and Wood Green and Minister for Equalities in the Home Office, in case you weren’t familiar). I know how miserable that sounds – I do get out occasionally. But you should try it every now and again: Lynne can always raise a smile and she’s posted a good ‘un today.

I’ve blogged about Featherstone before before and, since then, her on-line activities have apparently earned her a ticking-off from an unhappy Sir Humphrey (to go with her ticking off from the fire-brigade – after calling them when her boiler was making funny noises). But still she ploughs on…

Today’s post is about a new police ‘front counter’. No, I’m not sure what that means either. My confusion is compounded by the fact that the ‘front counter’ is in a pub, the Fishmongers Arms. What’s tickled me though is not the idea of ordering a pint from my local PC, but the fact that Lynne is so desperate that this ‘front counter’ – a place for reporting crime, presumably – is put to full use. She says:

“But people have got to use it [the ‘front counter’]. Having fought for so long to get 24 hour opening – I know that the local commander will be monitoring closely how many people use it during the unsocial hours. If it is not used – he will come back to me and argue that it is not cost-effective and be looking to go back to the old hours.”

Am I the only one in thinking that the poor Commander may have stuck one of his bobbies in the boozer just to get Featherstone off his back? Wouldn’t it be broadly be a good thing if there was no need for the police to be sat in a pub at five in the morning, just in case a passer-by needed to pop in for a chat? Instead they could be – I don’t know – responding to 999 calls or something.

I await her next pronouncements on education with bated breath. In the meantime, keep your eyes peeled for Featherstone’s next blog:

“Fire station not being used much – throw your cat up a tree and give them a call!”



Filed under Lib Dems, Politics - general

3 responses to “Featherstone in demand for 24-hour crime

  1. I like Hornsey, as does Lord Toby Harris who blogs re London among other things.

    Lynn seems unworldly.

    Perhaps she saw one of those Rob Wilton films, police or railwaymen muddling though, and she hopes to recreate that spirit of doziness?

  2. lynne featherstone

    Hi. The reason I blogged the opening of the new police front counter 24/7 where people can go to report crime is so that people know it has moved to much better and more pleasant premises and to reiterate what the local Commander said to me about keeping it open 24/7.

    These opening hours are the result of public demand – so I am just letting people know the where and the when.

    • Thanks for making a comment but it still seems an odd blog to write (and an oddly written blog).

      OK, let people know the where and the when – but if this is the result of public demand, why the need to urge people to use it? What would the problem be if it were not used? Don’t you agree with the Commander – if it’s not used, why have it?

      Also – what do you think is the balance between you pushing for something to happen and a Borough Commander making these decisions based on operational knowledge? Is there not the risk that pushing for a ‘front counter’ to be operational 24/7 may divert resources? (Since your blog, I’ve tried to work out what a ‘front counter’ is – in other areas they seem to be day-time services run by volunteers, more of a drop-in community service than a round-the-clock service).

      More broadly, will your Government continue to fund these services given you consider them to be so vital? I understood police funding hadn’t been ring-fenced. There is an startling inconsistency here where you write as an MP in favour of services such as this and yet are also a member of a Government committed to dismantling our public services on an unprecedented scale.

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