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Mounted Section Falls Victim To Cuts

One of the last mounted units in the country will be disbanded after the Olympics, a police authority has decided

Nottinghamshire Police Authority has signed off on a plan to cut its force’s mounted section and redeploy the officers to local policing in a bid to soften the blow of the cuts in central government grants.

As previously reported on PoliceOracle.com, the unit was up for disbandment as part of the force’s drive to cut £42 million from its annual budget. Some 200 officer posts have already been cut, 100 of whom were forced to retire under Regulation A19, along with 300 staff.

The unit will disband after its last job, which will be to help police the Olympic Games in London. The force said the horses would be sold “in a way that places their future welfare at the top of our priorities” while the officers would be redeployed to local policing teams.

Acting Chief Constable Chris Eyre said he was aiming to get 100 extra officers in these teams by 2015.

He added: “Our determination is to do everything we can to protect and enhance front line services to our local communities. This will in part be achieved by shifting officers from other operational roles into local policing.”

The force website keeps photos of the seven horses and gives a fact about each one. The unit also has a Twitter feed that posts pictures of the animals policing public order events and visiting schools in the area.

CC Eyre added: “I acknowledge the affection many of our residents have for the police horses. I fully recognise the history of the mounted section and the contribution it has made over the many decades to policing the city and county.

“But I have to deliver a policing service that makes the very best use of very limited resources and to that end make some difficult choices. The force is one of very few left in England and Wales that retains a mounted section and, although its work is important, it is not a unit that is used frequently.”

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