Three police forces merge services to save £2m a year

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Cambridgeshire, Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire police forces have merged their forensic, armed response and major crime units to save £2m a year.

The merger is intended to save money and protect officer numbers in the face of cuts, Hertfordshire Police said.

In October last year, the three constabularies agreed to work closer together in some departments to save £3m a year.

By 2015, they hope to have further joint services to save £20m a year.

'Tremendous benefits'

Andy Bliss, the Chief Constable of Hertfordshire Police, said the merger would save money but maintain numbers of police officers.

"These joint functions also bring tremendous benefits in terms of increased capacity and resilience at times of peak demand," he said.

The three forces have set up a unit to provide forensic services across all three organisations and a joint armed policing unit to serve all three counties.

A joint major crime unit has also been created to investigate murder, manslaughter, kidnap and extortion cases.

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