Police and Fire Services to share new joint headquarters at Nettleham
New Joint Headquarters – Police and Fire Services will share and share alike at Nettleham!
If the first you knew of police and fire moving in together is the new banner outside Police Headquarters it will be worth reading on!
For more than a year, a multi-agency team has been preparing to implement a groundbreaking collaboration between the three emergency services in the county.
With financial incentives from Government, the services, together with Lincolnshire County Council, are pioneering new ways of working together. In Nettleham this will result in the current police headquarters becoming an administrative command and control room facility, shared with Lincolnshire Fire and Rescue.
The work soon to start at Nettleham is the first stage of what will be a major overhaul of the way Lincolnshire’s emergency services operate throughout the county.
In addition to sharing the headquarters complex, Lincoln Police Station will close in the city and move services to a purpose built tri-service operational campus facility with Fire and Ambulance at their current South Park site. A further 25 locations throughout the county are likely to be shared by the three services, strengthening greater integration in the future.
Chief Constable Neil Rhodes, who has been leading the programme of work on behalf of all the agencies, says sharing facilities with the other emergency services makes both financial and operational sense.
“Lincolnshire will become the best example of emergency services collaboration in the country and the initiative effectively future-proofs our estates,” he says. “A major incentive to implement this initiative has been our successful bid during 2015 for a Government Innovation Award worth £7.5m, which will significantly help towards funding this innovative Blue Light Collaboration Project.”
Nick Borrill, Acting Chief Fire Officer at Lincolnshire Fire and Rescue, shares his view. “Working in collaboration with other agencies is a fundamental part of how we work. By working side by side at sites throughout the county, we can achieve greater value for money and long-term savings, as well as allowing us to strengthen our relationships and deliver the best service possible.”
Mr Rhodes says that people walking along Deepdale Lane, or through the grounds on the public right of way, are not likely to notice many differences. There may be some contractor vehicles and materials visible on site, but these will be directed around the village and the only external change, still subject to planning approval, will be an extension to the existing car park. “Most of the work will be inside police HQ and will involve re-configuring internal walls to create open plan offices to make optimum use of space,” he says.
Overall personnel numbers will remain roughly the same, some police staff will be moving out to other shared locations as the Fire & Rescue staff move in to Nettleham to provide the command direction and administrative support for their countywide operations. A very small number of operational police officers will continue to be based at Nettleham, but there will be no more in the future than there are now.
The initial work to create the shared headquarters is due to be completed by the end of March next year, with the South Park Campus due for completion at the end of 2018.
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