Toon police set to move to council HQ

Officers will move from Merchant Street to Buchan House in the near future
Officers will move from Merchant Street to Buchan House in the near future

The Scottish Police Authority (SPA) has approved a plan to relocate Peterhead Police Station.

A plan to move officers and staff currently based at the Merchant Street station to a purpose-built extension to Aberdeenshire Council’s Buchan House was agreed by members of the SPA board at a meeting in Stirling on Wednesday, May 2.

Through the service’s Estates Strategy, as part of Policing 2026, the existing Peterhead Police Station was identified as requiring urgent action due to its age and condition.

Alternative accommodation options have been considered recently and the opportunity to co-locate with Aberdeenshire Council will establish a public sector partnership collaboration which will enhance joint services and benefit the local community.

The move will allow officers and staff to benefit from the updated infrastructure as well as being able to work alongside partner agencies.

Police front counter staff have been based alongside council staff at Buchan House since November 2016.

This move has already been seen as positive and successful, allowing members of the public to attend one location in the town centre where all their questions or concerns can be answered, quickly and effectively.

Most community concerns are a shared responsibility and Police Scotland working alongside housing, social work, mental health and environmental services to name but a few, is seen as an opportunity to enhance and develop existing partnerships. A dedicated, purpose-built area within the new extension will also be created for the local uniformed Operational Policing team.

Assistant Chief Constable John Hawkins, who is responsible for both Local Policing in the North of Scotland and the Estates Strategy, said: “The move will enhance our delivery of effective local policing in North East division while bringing about a welcome opportunity to increase collaboration with partners, at strategic, tactical and operation levels.

“I hope this move, which is consistent with the principles of the service’s Local Approaches to Policing programme, will encourage further collaboration both within the North East and more widely across Scotland.

“Enhanced partnership working will result in improved outcomes for local communities, with people accessing multiple key services in a location which is easily accessible and fit for purpose.

“We acknowledge that Scotland is changing, and in order to remain relevant, legitimate and effective, Police Scotland also has to change. This move is a sign the service is responsive to the needs of the communities we serve.”

North East Divisional Commander, Chief Superintendent Campbell Thomson: said “A new police office in Peterhead has been in the planning for a long time.

“This excellent proposal allows for the project plan and timeline to be developed and finalised over the coming weeks and planning application submitted. This move strengthens our commitment to our communities, as we are retaining local police with local knowledge in the heart of our communities.”

Aberdeenshire Council Chief Executive Jim Savege said: “Aberdeenshire Council and Police Scotland have a very close and effective working relationship, and this is reflected in the decision for the development of facilities alongside Buchan House.

“This is a great decision- it reinforces the commitment of both organisations to keeping their feet firmly on the ground alongside the very people we serve. I think people expect public services to work in a joined up way, making the best use of taxpayers’ money, so where we can work in this way, it is what we ought to do.”

Plans will now be progressed to finalise the programme of work and the transfer of officers to their new location will follow in due course.