MPs and London Assembly Members joined Metropolitan Police officers out on the streets to gain a better insight into the work they do on a daily basis.

Taking part in the #WalkTheMet campaign, a number of politicians braved the cold weather to stand by officers across Harrow in appreciation of their efforts.

Assembly Member and Harrow councillor Susan Hall spent three hours on patrol in the town centre; an experience she described as “wonderful”.

She said: “They really do know everything about the area and it was great to see what they do out on our streets.

“I have a great deal of time for the Met and the officers in Harrow, I had a wonderful time.”

The Met has suffered from government cuts in recent years and has been told to find a further £400 million worth of savings.

This has led to the closure of several police buildings and a reduction in the number of officers out on the streets.

Ms Hall believes that this could prove damaging since, in her eyes, there is nothing more valuable than a physical presence.

“They were preaching to the converted because I believe that bodies on the streets are the best thing ever,” she said.

“It really does act as a deterrent and prevents a number of crimes – from pickpocketing in busy areas to more serious matters.”

The Home Office recently announced that a further £450 million could be made available for police funding throughout England and Wales.

And Harrow Borough Commander Simon Ovens explained that, while the situation is not ideal, the money saved from vastly underused buildings would go some way towards softening the blow when it comes to cuts.

Gareth Thomas, Navin Shah, Cressida Dick and Sachin Shah outside Harrow Police Station

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But Gareth Thomas, MP for Harrow West, who met with Met Commissioner Cressida Dick, took the opportunity to discuss the growing issues affecting areas such as South Harrow.

He said: “It was great to welcome Commissioner Dick to Harrow and have the opportunity to raise a number of concerns about policing in our local area.

“The Met have already seen huge cuts to their budget resulting in the loss of 173 uniformed police from our streets.

“Given the extremely worrying increase in crime, particularly rising knife crime, it beggars belief that the government seem intent on cutting a further £400 million from the annual Met budget.

“I spoke about the lack of funds for our police force in Parliament last week, and will continue to raise this at every opportunity.

“In the meantime I will continue to work closely with the police and Harrow Council to ensure that they use the resources they still have available as effectively as possible, and that they are responsive to local residents concerns.

“To that end I am holding two public meetings with senior police officers in the New Year, and would encourage anyone who would like to attend to contact my office for more details.”

Police said the #WalkTheMet campaign was a huge success and they were pleased to see so many people take the opportunity to advance the relationship between officers and elected representatives.

Ed Stearns, the Met’s acting director of media and communications, noted how it was particularly pertinent given the amount of effort that goes into policing over the festive period.

He said: “At Christmas, officers and staff continue to work around the clock and protect London while people are enjoying their festivities.

“We hope this helps highlight the challenges our officers face and their year-round dedication as they work their socks off for all Londoners.”