Long-awaited plans to give the police a more visible presence in Bath have finally been submitted.
Bath and North East Somerset Council is set to scale back its use of Lewis House so Avon and Somerset Police can expand its footprint.
The police station was previously a stone’s throw away across Manvers Street in a building sold by the force in 2015 for £7 million that is now occupied by the University of Bath.
When it shut, Bath’s neighbourhood and response officers moved to a Redbridge House in Lower Bristol Road, a mile away from the centre, leaving only an enquiry desk in Lewis House.
Politicians have been promising for years to give the police a more visible presence in Bath.
Plans submitted on behalf of the force by police and crime commissioner Mark Shelford’s office say: “The existing premises no longer serve its purpose as its facilities do not provide sufficient accommodation to support the level of service provision required in the area.
“Furthermore, the existing premises are not sufficiently visually prominent for the public to be aware of the police presence within the centre of Bath.”
If approved, the police will take over a third of Lewis House.
Officers will use the building daily from 7am to 3am, and ad hoc outside those hours to support the nighttime economy, and it will open to the public on weekdays from 10am to 6pm.
Outside will be two dedicated parking spaces for officers, a police lantern, an alarm box bell, CCTV cameras and a knife amnesty bin.
B&NES Council’s One Stop Shop is also in Lewis House, offering help with its services.
The authority will consider the application.
Stephen Sumner, Local Democracy Reporter