March 21, 2023 1.00 pm This story is over 15 months old

Lincolnshire Police to be stretched thinner by Scampton migrant plans

Safety fears for migrants on the A15

Lincolnshire Police and Crime Commissioner has said the use of RAF Scampton to house asylum would “spread police that bit thinner” if it went ahead.

Marc Jones said he would be urging the Home Secretary to reconsider the use of the airfield and allow plans from West Lindsey District Council to go ahead.

A public meeting in the village on Monday night saw hundreds attend with concerns raised around the security of the site.

There were fears about safety along the A15 if asylum seekers might opt to walk into Lincoln.

County Councillor Richard Butroid said: “Lincolnshire Police force resources will be diverted among migrant communities in Lincolnshire which will impact on their ability to police other areas. The same will apply for Lincolnshire Fire and Rescue as well.

“It will have an impact on the health provision and put additional resources on existing health care resources in the local area. That’s clear.”

He said the potential for accidents on the A15 was a “really serious concern”.

Lincolnshire Police and Crime Commissioner Marc Jones attended the meeting in RAF Scampton on Monday night. | Image: Daniel Jaines

One nurse told the meeting that services at Lincoln hospital were “already broken”.

Following the meeting, PCC Mr Jones said: “It is really important that if you’ve got people that don’t understand necessarily how to stay safe on our roads, then putting them next to a busy road five miles outside Lincoln centre is not a very smart way to go ahead.

“Equally it does spread Lincolnshire Police that bit thinner. We are already stretched, it’s not news that Lincolnshire are the lowest funded force.

“Giving us any additionality without funding to be able to manage it is never going to be a good idea.”

However, he said the driver for him was about the economy and the opportunities West Lindsey District Council’s £300m investment plans could create for the area while protecting the heritage of the site.

He said the county had long struggled to get the backing to make investments and “drive up” education, skills and employment.

Mr Jones admitted the force would be spread thinner and called for the Home Office to allow investment plans to go ahead. | Image: Daniel Jaines

“As soon as we get an absolutely superb, outstanding opportunity, something comes and gets in the way and we’ve got to do everything possible to prevent that happening.

“It’s about making sure that growth happens.

“As a Police and Crime Commissioner, I speak directly to the Home Secretary on a regular basis and I will be speaking to her on this matter to really urge the home office to think again and actually look for a more suitable site.

He said it needed to be one that would provided a level of dignity for migrants, but also that “would protect and serve the local community driving up the economy, making Scampton a real jewel in the crown of Lincolnshire.”

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