The building of the brand new community fire station in Cannock is this week another step closer as initial construction work starts.
The state of the art community facility, to be built on the existing station ground, will open at the end of January 2011.
"This brand new station will allow us to open our doors to the people of Cannock and give us the opportunity to really embed ourselves within the local community."
Stuart Claughton, Area Commander, Cannock
From this week onwards the constructors, Stepnell, will clear the site and start preparing the land.
From March construction on the new station, which will be located on land to the front of the existing station, will commence.
During the whole of the construction phase firefighters will continue to operate out of the existing station. They will then move across into the new station next January before demolition starts on the old station.
Letters have been sent to residents located close to the fire station, informing them of the construction work that will be taking place and when they can expect contractors to be working. 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. Once the new community fire station opens the crewing levels will be increased and firefighters will be based there around the clock.
Area Commander for Cannock, Stuart Claughton said: "This brand new station will allow us to open our doors to the people of Cannock and give us the opportunity to really embed ourselves within the local community.
“We plan to bury a time capsule within the foundations of the new community fire station, so in the coming months we’ll be looking for contributions from local residents and partners."
Cllr Phil Jones who sits on the Fire and Rescue Authority added: "It's taken years of hard work to get to this stage, so to now see actual construction work in progress, it's very rewarding.
"The current station was built nearly 50 years ago now so a brand new station is certainly welcomed."
The station is one of ten new community fire stations being built under the £46 million private finance initiative (PFI) project.