Sleaford MP presses policing minister for more funding for Lincolnshire force

Sleaford and North Hykeham MP Dr Caroline Johnson. EMN-180914-145538001
Sleaford and North Hykeham MP Dr Caroline Johnson. EMN-180914-145538001

Sleaford and North Hykeham MP Caroline Johnson has been again pressing the Policing Minister to ensure the Lincolnshire force gets adequate funding it needs.

Currntly Lincolnshire Police is one of the lowest funded forces per head in the country and a fairer funding campaign has been led by the ocunty council and Police and Crime Commissioner Marc Jones.

On Wednesday in the House of Commons, Dr Caroline Johnson MP pressed the Policing Minister, asking: “My right hon. Friend is aware of the excellent work being done by Lincolnshire Police to keep us safe. I regularly meet our excellent Police and Crime Commissioner, Marc Jones, to discuss the challenges involved in policing such a large rural area.

“Lincolnshire Police have 5,500 miles of road and 2,500 square miles to police. What more can the Minister do to ensure that our dedicated police force has the funds it needs to police this rural area?”

The minister, Nick Hurd MP, replied: “I pay tribute to my hon. Friend and to all those who have been absolutely assiduous in making representations on behalf of Lincolnshire Police, which is a stretched force that is facing financial challenges.

“Marc Jones has also been assiduous as a PCC in making these points, and we have worked closely with him to understand the pressures on that police force. It has received an additional £3.3 million this year, which I hope my hon. Friend welcomes. It has also been the recipient of some special grants through the special grant programme.

“We will work closely with Marc and other PCCs to make the case in the next Comprehensive Spending Review for increased resources for our police system, which I hope ​Lincolnshire will benefit from. I would add that Lincolnshire is another example of a force that has worked superbly to adapt and harness technology to make more productive use of police time. It is a leader in the use of mobile working technology and I congratulate it on that.”

Commenting afterwards, Mrs Johnson said: “I am glad that the Minister recognises the financial pressures faced by our local force, and that he will continue to work with us to ensure that our excellent police officers get the support that they need. Policing in a rural area is challenging, in different ways than urban policing; Lincolnshire is geographically large with areas of sparse population and a long road network.

“Our PCC and our Chief Constable work very hard to keep all of us in Lincolnshire safe, and I will persist in working closely with them and my fellow Lincolnshire MPs to make sure that our county’s voice is heard in Westminster.”