Firefighters are inviting Stone residents to take a look around their new community fire station as part of a special celebration event.
"The tour will give people the chance to have a look behind the scenes at the operational side of the station and there will also be the opportunity to see the community rooms, which are available, free of charge, for local groups to use."
Stone Station Manager Dave Steele
The crew will be showcasing the facilities which are available for local groups to use as well as giving a tour of the operational side of the station.
The community open day will take place from 1pm-3pm and then from 4pm-6pm on Monday, March 23.
A milestone will also be marked at 10.30am when a time capsule will be buried in the community fire station’s grounds. Chief Fire Officer Peter Dartford will be attending the ceremony, along with local councillors.
The time capsule will contain photographs and ID cards of the current crew, pictures of recent retirees and a photocopy of a newspaper article about Stone Community Fire Station.
Artwork and poems penned by pupils from Christchurch Academy, some of whom will attend the event, will also be included. The children entered a competition to draw or write about their view of Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service.
Stone Baked Ltd, based in High Street, Stone, will be supplying 40 special edition cupcakes for the occasion. Half will feature the logo from the Service’s successful ‘Push the Button’ campaign and the other half will display the fire and rescue service logo.
Stone Station Manager Dave Steele said: "We are really looking forward to showing local residents around their new community fire station. For many people it will be their first look at this state-of-the-art facility that not only allows us to respond more efficiently and effectively to 21st Century emergencies, it also enables us to engage much more closely with the people that we serve. The tour will give people the chance to have a look behind the scenes at the operational side of the station and there will also be the opportunity to see the community rooms, which are available, free of charge, for local groups to use.
"The items that have been placed in the time capsule have been very carefully chosen so that they represent the fire and rescue service as it is today, with input from the crews and local school children. We hope that when the time capsule is dug up in 50 years’ time, it will give generations to come, a real insight into life in 2015."
Stone’s new £3 million community fire station has replaced the outdated base on The Fillybrooks which was built in 1975. It has been designed to enable firefighters to respond more efficiently and effectively to 21st Century emergencies.
Facilities within the building have also been created specifically with the community in mind and for the use of residents. Groups and organisations will be encouraged to gather in the meeting rooms, creating a community hub and allowing for greater contact between local people and firefighters who serve the area.
Stone Community Fire Station was the fourth facility to become operational in phase two of a major upgrade of buildings across the county with Chase Terrace, Kinver and Longton going live initially.
In total, 10 community fire stations will be rebuilt on their current sites plus a brand new station at Loggerheads which has now replaced the 45-year-old station at Ashley. The first phase saw three additional stations developed and seven stations replaced between October 2009 and September 2011.
The Service will have invested a total of £90 million, funded through a Private Finance Initiative, on improving the stations when the project has been completed.