Uttoxeter firefighters will move into their brand new community fire station this weekend.
"It’s an exciting time for the firefighters who can now move into the building that they have been watching evolve over the past year."
Chief Fire Officer/Chief Executive, Peter Dartford
Firefighters have spent the last year responding to emergencies from a temporary fire station, but from Monday they will start responding from their new base.
Construction work will continue at the site until April, whilst the grounds and car park are completed. The station will open to the community in April and a number of drop in sessions are already planned for the Easter holidays; Friday 15 April from 10am to 1pm, Saturday 16 April from 1pm to 4pm, Tuesday 19 April from 3pm to 6pm and Wednesday 20 April from 3pm to 6pm. No booking is required and attendees will get a tour of the new station and will have the opportunity to find out more about the fire and rescue service.
Chief Fire Officer/Chief Executive, Peter Dartford said: "The old fire station was built in 1960 and was designed to keep members of the public out - this building is exactly the opposite, it’s a community facility that also happens to be a fire station. Like never before we will be able to engage and educate the community in a positive, interactive way.
"It’s an exciting time for the firefighters who can now move into the building that they have been watching evolve over the past year. We also hope the people of Uttoxeter will embrace the new station and we look forward to inviting them in for a tour at Easter."
Chairman of the Fire and Rescue Authority, Cllr Len Bloomer added: "We’re really pleased with the new station; it’s a very impressive building with state of the art facilities for both the firefighters and the community. The team have worked extremely hard to ensure that this project has been delivered on time, to an excellent quality and to budget, so to meet this important milestone is a real achievement."
Uttoxeter is the fourth in a line of ten new community fire stations being built under a private finance initiative (PFI) project. The consortium delivering the project is called Fire Support (see Notes to Editor). Construction company Stepnell have constructed the £2.1 million building and COFELY Ltd will provide the ongoing facilities management.
General Manager for Fire Support, Ian Bolden commented: "The Fire Support partnership is an excellent example of the private and public sector working together successfully to deliver long-lasting benefits for the community. By working in collaboration effectively, we have been able to design and build 21st Century fire stations that meet the demands of today whilst also providing the facility to serve local people."
Three community fire stations have already opened in Rising Brook, Sandyford and Tamworth. All three are providing extremely popular with the local community, the new station at Tamworth attracted 2000 people in just four days last month. A number of community groups and partners have now got regular booking slots at the stations.