£8m for new Wrexham emergency services centre
The creation of a new joint Ambulance and Fire Services Resource Centre for Wrexham is moving forward with a £8.4 million capital funding boost from the Welsh Government, Health Minister Mark Drakeford announced today.
Once completed the centre will provide better facilities for staff and improved services for the public in the Wrexham and surrounding area. It is the first centre of its kind to be purpose built and part funded by the Welsh Government.
It will cost £15 million, with the Welsh Government providing £8 million towards the project. The new emergency service centre will replace the existing fire station at Bradley Road in Wrexham, and the existing ambulance stations in Chirk and Wrexham.
Wrexham Council has approved planning permission for the centre, which will be built near Wrexham Maelor Hospital, in Croesnewydd Road.
The new centre will include:
· A local community safety office
· An eight-bay fire station
· A state-of-the-art training house and drill tower with a road traffic collision training area
· Ambulance accommodation, including a fleet workshop, offices and deployment base for response staff;
· Facilities for staff, including a rest room, dining rooms, main office, lockers, meeting and training rooms, which will be shared by both services.
Professor Drakeford said:
"This project will provide the most modern facilities available for both the fire and ambulance services in the area. It will allow them to work even closer together, creating more efficient and effective services.
"Most importantly, it will allow greater coordination when it comes to responding to incidents and improve response times.”
Elwyn Price-Morris, Chief Executive of the Welsh Ambulance Service, said:
"We are thrilled that Welsh Government saw the potential in this project and approved our Full Business Case.
"This development will provide modern, improved and upgraded services, and make the best use of resources for both organisations.
"Dedicated fleet assistants will improve the cleanliness of vehicles and reduce the risk of cross infection, enabling clinicians to spend more time face-to-face with patients delivering better care for the area.
"Along with this is, of course, the added bonus of being co-located with emergency service colleagues with whom we already have a close working relationship and attend many incidents together.
"A lot of hard work and preparation has gone into this project from the partnership, and we look forward to seeing the construction begin.”
Chief Fire Officer Simon Smith said that North Wales Fire and Rescue Service recognise the benefits of collaborating in this way:
"We entered into this partnership with the aspiration of creating a joint facility we can be proud of, in the same way that the Joint Communications Centre with North Wales Police has provided an innovative approach to joint emergency services working that places North Wales at the forefront of 999 operations.
"I am delighted that we are now in a position to take the initiative forward as it presents us with the best opportunity possible to provide both improved facilities for our staff and a better service for the public in the area."