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Saturday, 19 April 2014

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Former Cumbrian police stations fail to sell at auction

Three former police stations that went under the hammer in a cost-cutting shake-up have failed to sell at auction.

Buyers were not found for buildings in Cockermouth, Cleator Moor and Kirkby Stephen in a sale at Manchester United’s Old Trafford football ground yesterday.

The force’s former station in Ambleside was sold for £141,000.

The organisation overseeing the running of the county police force is now considering its options on the others.

They are among 12 across the county to close under a cost-cutting programme announced last year in the wake of spending cuts.

Ray Cole, chairman of Cumbria Police Authority, said: “We are pleased that Ambleside was auctioned but are disappointed the other buildings were not sold. The police authority works on behalf of the people of Cumbria to ensure that public money is well spent.

“Part of our duty is to ensure that the constabulary maximises the value of its assets as it strives to save £20m from its budget.

“We will now reconsider our options for the sale of the three former police stations.”

Mr Cole added the force had “no choice” but to meet savings wanted by the Government and faced the “difficult challenge” of going through major change while continuing to police the county.

The overall shake-up has also seen new bases open.

The constabulary has had to examine its set-up because of budget cuts.

The changes will save about £119,000 a year in running costs and the force says they will help protect visible policing.

The force has yet to decide how to dispose of the other stations.

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