Disclosure Details

Police Stations - 606/12

Dated: 31 Jul 2015

Date of request:   26/07/2012

Date of response:   14/08/2012

Provision of information held by Northumbria Police made under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the 'Act')(FOIA)

Thank you for your email dated 26 July 2012 in which you made a request for access to certain information which may be held by Northumbria Police.

As you may be aware the purpose of the Act is to allow a general right of access to information held by a Public Authority (including the Police), subject to certain limitations and exemptions.

You asked: 

Please could you supply me with the following, accurate as of 26 July 2012:

  1. A list of all police stations, including those without public counter service, in your constabulary;

  2. A list of all police stations, excluding those without public counter service, in your constabulary;

  3. A list of all police desks at shared locations (town halls, supermarkets and other public amenities) in your constabulary;

  4. A list of all police administration buildings in your constabulary.

In response:

We have now had the opportunity to fully consider your request and I provide a response for your attention.

Following receipt of your request, searches were conducted with the Legal, Professional Standards and Finance Departments of Northumbria Police.  I can confirm that the information you have requested is held by Northumbria Police.

I have decided to disclose the located information to you as follows.

  1. As part of the information you have requested at these points of your request is accessible by other means I have not provided you with a copy of the information and will rely on Section 21 of the Freedom of Information Act 2000.  You should therefore consider this a refusal for your request.

    I have provided an explanation to this exemption below.

    Section 21 (1) - Information accessible by other means

    Information which is reasonably accessible to the applicant is exempt information.

    A list of police stations with public counter service is published on the Northumbria Police website under FAQs.  I have provided the relevant link below.

    http://www.northumbria.police.uk/faq/index.asp?all=1

    Those stations without public service counters are as follows:

    Harton Police Station, 187 Sunderland Road, South Shields 


    Boldon Police Station, North Road, Boldon Colliery 

    Ponteland Police Station, 20 Bell Villas, Ponteland 

    Rothbury Police Station, Front Street, Rothbury 

    Seahouses Police Station, 5 James Street, Seahouses 

    Wooler Police Station, Church Street, Wooler 

    Bellingham Police Station, Fountain View, Bellingham 

    Corbridge Police Station, Aydon Road, Corbridge 

    Haltwhistle Police Station, Aesica Road, Haltwhistle 

    Amble Police Station, Leslie Drive, Amble 

    Tower View Police Office, Fox & Hounds Lane, Newcastle upon Tyne 

    Metrocentre Police Office, Blue Quadrant, Metrocentre, Gateshead 

    Percy Park Road, Tynemouth.

  2. As per our response to 1 above.

  3. Thornhill School, Thornholme Road, Sunderland 

    Venerable Bede School, Tunstall Bank, Sunderland 

    Southmoor Community School, Ryhope Road, Sunderland 

    New Silksworth Junior School, Blind Lane, Sunderland 

    Farringdon Junior School, Archer Road, Sunderland 

    Hastings Hill Primary School, Tilbury Road, Sunderland 

    Witherwack Primary School, Wilmslow Close, Sunderland 

    Redby Junior & Infants School, Fulwell Road, Sunderland 

    Barmston Primary School, Barmston Centre, Washington 

    St Roberts of Newminster School, Biddick Lane, Washington 

    Easington Lane Primary School, High Street, Easington Lane, Houghton le Spring 

    Hetton Centre, Welfare Road, Hetton le Hole 

    Hedworth Partnership Office, 29 Fellgate Ave, Jarrow 

    Leam Lane MPB, Colegate, Gateshead 

    The Hub Resource Centre, 16 Harraton Terrace, Birtley 

    Chopwell Community Centre, Derwent Street, Chopwell 

    Coble Dene, Royal Quays, North Shields 

    Meadowell Centre, Waterville Road, North Shields 

    John Willie Sams Centre, Market Street, Dudley, Cramlington 

    ASDA Benton, Whitley Road, Newcastle upon Tyne 

    Wallsend Town Hall, Wallsend 

    Lemington Centre, Tyne View, Lemington 

    Gosforth High School, Knightsbridge, Newcastle upon Tyne 

    Kenton School, Drayton Road, Newcastle upon Tyne 

    The Gate, Newgate Street, Newcastle upon Tyne 

    Eldon Court, Eldon Square, Newcastle upon Tyne 

    Walkergate Primary School, Sutton Street, Newcastle upon Tyne 

    ASDA, Blyth, Cowpen Road, Blyth.

  4. Force HQ, North Road Ponteland, Newcastle 

    13/14 Tavistock Place, Sunderland 

    31/35 Station Road, Hebburn 

    Stonehills, Shields Road, Pelaw, Gateshead 

    Cobalt Business Exchange, Cobalt Way, Newcastle upon Tyne 

    Victory House, Balliol Business Park, Newcastle upon Tyne 

    Sackville Road, Newcastle upon Tyne

    I am unable to provide further information in relation to question 4 of your request and will rely on the following exemption.

    Section 31(1))(a)(b)) Law Enforcement

    Information which is not exempt information by virtue of section 30 is exempt information if its disclosure under this Act would or would be likely to, prejudice-

    a) the prevention and detection of crime

    b) the apprehension or prosecution of offenders

    c) the administration of justice

    Section 31 is a qualified exemption and requires the application of a Harm and public interest test which I have set out below.

    Harm Test

    In order to counter criminal behaviour it is vital that the police have the ability to work, where necessary covertly.

    The disclosure of any further information regarding locations of police premises where certain activities are coordinated and monitored could encourage individuals with ill intent to target or attack  those specific buildings.  Damage may be caused which would incur costs to the force in repairs, and could also have an effect on the ability of the force to prevent and detect crime and ultimately disrupt law enforcement.  
      
    Information that undermines the operational integrity of these activities will adversely affect the public and may have a negative impact on both national security and law enforcement.

    Public interest Test

    Considerations which favour disclosure:

    Accountability
    The information could relate directly to the efficiency and effectiveness of the Force, showing the public the resources available, and where public money is spent.

    Public Debate
    The Police Services handling of investigations is subject to much debate and the information may enhance the public debate on these issues.

    Considerations favouring non-disclosure:

    Effective and efficient conduct of the force
    Release of the information may lead to attacks on such premises, and compromise the safety of those working there.  If the locations of such resources were common knowledge this could be advantageous to those who are intent on causing disruption to the activities and staff housed within those premises  which would subsequently affect the force's law enforcement capabilities.

    Public safety
    Public safety could be compromised by acts of vandalism aimed at such buildings with a view to disrupt investigations.  The safety of the public is paramount and would not be put at risk under any circumstances.

    Balancing Test

    In this case the Public Interest in maintaining the exemption outweighs the public interest in disclosing the information.  It is not sufficient that information will be of interest to the public; its release must be beneficial to the community as a whole.  To publicise such locations would effectively give wrong doers a valuable piece of intelligence that could be used to their advantage through the monitoring of such address/es and subsequently adversely impact on the work carried out by departments using those premises.  Northumbria Police will not disclose information where there is a likelihood that disclosure would reveal police tactics, capabilities and vulnerabilities.  There is a very strong public interest in safeguarding both national security and the integrity of police investigations and operations.

    Therefore, it is our opinion that for these issues the balancing test for disclosing any other information relevant to your request is not made out.

    You should consider this to be a refusal under Section 17 of the Act for this part of your request.

 You may be interested to know that Northumbria Police routinely publish information that has been disclosed by Northumbria Police in response to requests made under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 via the Disclosure Log.  The aim of the Disclosure Log is to promote openness and transparency by voluntarily placing information into the public arena.

Whilst it is not possible to publish all responses we will endeavour to publish those where we feel that the information disclosed is in the public interest.  The Disclosure Log will be updated once responses have been sent to the requester.  I have provided the relevant link below:-

http://www.northumbria.police.uk/foi/disclosurelog/index.asp

The information we have supplied to you is likely to contain intellectual property rights of Northumbria Police.  Your use of the information must be strictly in accordance with the Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988 (as amended) or such other applicable legislation.  In particular, you must not re-use this information for any commercial purpose.


How to complain

If you are unhappy with our decision or do not consider that we have handled your request properly and we are unable to resolve this issue informally, you are entitled to make a formal complaint to us underour complaints procedure which can be found at:http://www.northumbria.police.uk/foi/disclosurelog/foicomprights.asp

If you are still unhappy after we have investigated your complaint and reported to you the outcome, you may complain directly to the Information Commissioner’s Office and request that they investigate to ascertain whether we have dealt with your request in accordance with the Act. 

Downloads

FOI Complaint Rights Procedure_tcm4-28029