The first blocks of the new community fire station at Cannock will be laid next week, signifying a step forward in the construction of the state of the art building.
Staffordshire’s Chief Fire Officer, Peter Dartford will be donning his high visibility jacket and helmet to lay the first block during a ceremony on 26th May, which will be attended by members of the Fire and Rescue Authority, representatives of the construction company, Stepnell, and local firefighters.
The new £4.3 million fire station, which will come complete with community facilities, is due to open in January 2011. Firefighters are continuing to operate out of the current station, whilst the new station is built on land to the front of the station. The station is already taking shape with the metal structure now in place. Demolition on the current station will commence once firefighters have moved into the new station.
The current station was built 48 years ago in 1962. Firefighters currently operate out of the station during the day and respond from home (within a five minute call out) at night. From September the crewing levels will be increased and firefighters will be based there around the clock.
"The station is really starting to take shape now. No longer is this new community fire station just a vision – we can now see it becoming a reality.
"This new station will be far from a ‘traditional’ fire station - instead of just being an emergency response base, we look forward to it becoming a central hub of community activity."
Chief Fire Officer/Chief Executive Peter Dartford
Chairman of the Fire and Rescue Authority, Cllr Len Bloomer added: "It’s a very exciting time for us as the community fire stations project picks up pace. This really will be a state of the art community station that will be the envy of other fire and rescue services across the country."
Strategic Projects Manager for Stepnell, Niraj Bhatt commented: "A lot of time has been spent preparing the grounds of Cannock site ready for construction of the new fire station. The recent erection of the steel frame marked a key milestone in our programme and will allow the shape and size of the station to be appreciated. Over the coming months the exterior of the building will quickly take shape and we hope the community’s anticipation will increase as we get ever closer to the unveiling of the new station."
In the coming months Cannock firefighters will be asking for contributions from the local community, to place in a time capsule, set to be buried in the grounds of the station.