Super wealthy residents of London suburb that is home to celebs including Ricky Gervais raise £210,000 to pay for their own private police force
- Residents will pay £3,000 each, per year, to go towards private coppers
- Sum will pay for sergeant on £40,000 wage and two constables on £25,000
- Group say area has fallen victim to violence since police station closed
- Met Police boss said he is 'against' idea of providing extra police for rich
Super-rich residents of a London suburb, who boast Ricky Gervais and George Michael as neighbours, have coughed up £210,000 to pay for their own private police force.
The group from Hampstead, north London, decided to 'crowdsource' three extra officers to run patrols after they became concerned about a new wave of violent crime.
Residents said things have been getting worse in the area since its police station closed.
Rather than accept the loss of the local bobbies, which they say has led to more burglaries and home raids, they want to convince the Met to bring them back.
The residents are forking out £3,000 a year each on the scheme which will pay for one sergeant on £40,000 a year and two constables on £25,000 as well equipment and transport.
They then want the Met to pay for another three officers so there is a total patrol of six.
A condition of the plan, which the residents want to run for three years at a total cost of £600,000, is that the extra officers hired would only be allowed to police the local area, and could not be drafted in for major events elsewhere.
According to one of the architects of the scheme, if the proposal was supported by the whole neighbourhood, it would only cost each person £13.
The Met Police confirmed to MailOnline that the plan is feasible, A spokesman pointed to a scheme whereby borough councils can buy in officers, which the Met gives them at a half-price rate.
Other buyers - such as the neighbours of Hampstead - are also allowed to make offers, but have to pay the full cost of the officers.
The group is now seeking permission from the Met to push ahead with the scheme but if Commissioner Sir Bernard Hogan Howe's comments are anything to go buy - the future does not look bright.
He said: 'Do we only provide extra policing to those who can afford it? I'm intuitively against that.'
For detail about private patrols to go to chick here