A POLICE commander has said the force cannot afford to be nostalgic as he announced the closure of three West Oxfordshire police bases.

Supt Colin Paine yesterday said police stations at Chipping Norton Woodstock and Charlbury would shut in favour of “more efficient” buildings.

Mr Paine, area commander for West Oxfordshire and Cherwell, said the Victorian station in London Road, Chipping Norton, cost £70,000 every year to maintain.

He said many people might feel “sad” to see the old building in Chipping Norton sold off, but added: “In this time of austerity we cannot afford to have these feelings of nostalgia.”

The town station will only be closed when a new home is found for the neighbourhood team with a front counter for the public.

Mr Paine also said neighbourhood teams and patrol teams would not be cut, adding: “I would like to reassure the public that relocating of police stations will not jeopardise response times to any incidents.”

The force will not be renewing the Charlbury police office annual £14,000 lease when it expires in April next year.

The office, based in the Spendlove Centre in Enstone Road, is run by volunteers and the force is looking to find another low cost replacement.

Mr Paine said a replacement for Woodstock police station in Hensington Road would be found before its lease expires in April 2016 .

In March, the force unveiled plans to axe and replace buildings across the county to help save £839,000.

Offices in Blackbird Leys, Barton, and Rose Hill are among those to be closed and replaced.

Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary this month said Thames Valley’s effort to cut £56.3m from 2011 to 2015 “demonstrated one of the strongest responses to the funding challenge.”