Deal completed over site of new police station6 October, 2016
The vision for a new police station in Blackpool is a step closer to reality after the deal to purchase the site was completed.
Contracts have been exchanged over the land at the former Progress House site, on Clifton Road, where the new West division headquarters will be built.
The investment, by Lancashire Police and Crime Commissioner Clive Grunshaw, is the biggest in the force’s history and will replace the ageing Bonny Street station, which is no longer fit for purpose.
The deal with Blackpool Council means work can begin later this year on the Clifton Road site.
Mr Grunshaw said: “This is a key milestone in this project and brings us another step closer to realising our vision of a modern and efficient police base on the Fylde coast that is fit for the 21st century.
“The current building at Bonny Street is out of date and a drain on already stretched resources – it is simply not fit for purpose and does not meet modern policing requirements. This is a one-off investment that will make our police force more efficient and effective for decades to come.
“I am also excited about the wider benefit to the area through creating jobs and apprenticeships that will boost the local economy as well as enabling the redevelopment of the Bonny Street site.”
Blackpool Council granted full planning permission for the new police station last month and work is expected to get underway in the coming weeks.
Chief Supt Stuart Noble, Divisional Commander for Lancashire Constabulary’s West Division, added: “This is a major and exciting development for the police that will see a massive improvement to our working environment.
“We are satisfied that the location is accessible and – along with the relocation of the neighbourhood policing team and front counter to the Council’s Municipal Building – we feel it will ultimately allow us to provide a better quality of service to the public.
“We should see work starting on site in November and we are hoping that the new headquarters will be completed in spring 2018.”
The Commissioner has sold the current police station at Bonny Street to Blackpool Council to enable the regeneration of the area in a deal that will see it leased back to the Constabulary until it is no longer required. The change will not affect the operation of the station but will help ensure a smooth transition once construction of new divisional HQ is complete.
The new building, close to the M55, will accommodate staff who are currently based at Bonny Street. It will provide a base for local neighbourhood policing and immediate response teams, as well as a public enquiry desk, investigations hub and 42 custody cells. This will also include a range of specialist teams serving the whole of the Fylde coast as well as Lancaster and Morecambe.
There will continue to be a visible police presence in the town centre at the council’s Municipal Buildings, which will include a public enquiries desk and space for the local policing team as well as response officers working in the area.
As part of the contract for building the new HQ, it has been agreed that local suppliers will have opportunities to get involved in the project and apprenticeships will be provided in the area in order to ensure a significant amount of the money spent stays in the local economy.