It’s time to get the plumbers in

PUBLISHED: 12:20 11 December 2008 | UPDATED: 21:38 31 May 2010

IN MY mind the police cells at Saffron Walden are suitable for use or not. This part-use is ridiculous. The problem is the cells don t have toilets and basins in them, so the EU says they are not fit to be used. Criminals expect basic comforts and don t

IN MY mind the police cells at Saffron Walden are suitable for use or not. This part-use is ridiculous. The problem is the cells don't have toilets and basins in them, so the EU says they are not fit to be used.

Criminals expect basic comforts and don't want to be escorted to the lavatory. As for the space, the

Saffron Walden cells are

not small. In many overcrowded prisons the cells have at least two, if not three, inmates occupying small spaces.

The cost in man hours to keep taking law breakers to Braintree has got to run into thousands of pounds each year. Getting some stainless steel sanitary ware and a plumber to fit them, plus upgrading the bed benches would cost less than £10,000 at a guess. So why don't

they do this?

Local police officers have been complaining for years about the outdated cells and unnecessary driving. I would like to ask why hasn't Robert Chambers got the plumbers in years ago?

He is our elected representative in Essex for Saffron Walden and has been chair of the Essex police committee for years.

Surely he should have dealt with sorting out things locally years before now in view of his senior position.

I would like him or the local chief of police to explain the costs and reasons for not refurbishing the Saffron Walden custody area.

We may be a backwater and we know ECC rarely lets money flow towards the north of the county but someone in power ought to see that the costs of a decade of transporting individuals to Braintree is a huge drain on time and resources.

Full use of a local custodial centre would be more cost efficient in this time of fiscal prudence.

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