Front counters and custody suites at four local police stations across Argyll and Bute will operate to revised hours from Monday 11 November.
Rothesay, Campbeltown, Dunoon and Lochgilphead police stations will operate from 7am to 6pm, seven days a week.
The revised hours are the result of a comprehensive review of Police Scotland’s custody and front counter demand across Argyll and Bute. The review had a specific focus on the long-term trends over a seven year period and formed part of a wider custody remodelling project.
The review revealed that custody numbers across Scotland dropped about 30% over the seven year period and 50% in Argyll and Bute alone. Face-to-face engagement with the public at the front counter was also found to represent a relatively small part of the duties of front counter staff, particularly during the evening and at night.
Chief Superintendent John Paterson of Police Scotland’s Argyll and West Dunbartonshire Division said: “The revised hours reflect the changes in how communities across the whole Arygll and Bute are engaging with Police Scotland. I would like to everyone in our communities that the level and quality of service they receive from us will not be affected as a result of the new operating hours.
“These revised opening hours will ensure that community officers and specialist resources spend more time in our communities. Indeed, the new hours will release twenty thousand police officer hours – that’s more time invested in our communities.
“I would like to reassure everyone that the overall number of officers has not been reduced as a result of these changes. In fact, we have recruited three new full-time posts from within the local area.”
Emergency contact phones will be available outside the four police stations which are operating revised hours. These are expected to be installed early in the new year and will allow communities to make direct contact with Police Scotland. Existing methods of contact are not affected.