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Police chief admits mistakes made during Havering’s police merger with other boroughs impacted response times

PUBLISHED: 07:00 15 September 2017

Deputy Assistant Commissioner Mark Simmons. Picture: Met Police

Deputy Assistant Commissioner Mark Simmons. Picture: Met Police

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A senior police officer has admitted mistakes made by the Met during the tri-borough merger have caused response times in Havering to plummet.

At a Havering Council meeting on Wednesday night, council leader Roger Ramsey deemed current response times “not acceptable”.

But he refused to brand the tri-borough pilot, which combined Havering’s police force with those of Barking and Dagenham and Redbridge in January, a mistake.

However, at a separate public meeting on Wednesday, deputy assistant commissioner Mark Simmons accepted the merger had not been handled well.

He said: “I’m not going to make any bones about it, we tried to do too much when we put the Basic Command Unit together, and the evidence of that is there for all to see.

“We’ve now almost gone back to the old system – we’ve learnt the lessons from that.

“Some parts of the trial have worked well, but in terms of response times, no, we take that absolutely on the chin, we didn’t get that right.

“We made it difficult for the staff here and we think we’ve now made the changes we need to.

“The proof of the pudding for that will be what happens now over the coming weeks.”

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