Making sure Merseyside Police is fit to fight crime, now and into the future16.10.23 - Merseyside
Merseyside’s Police Commissioner and Chief Constable are unveiling a refreshed 12-year plan to continue the transformation of the force’s stations and buildings focused on ensuring the organisation is fit to fight crime, now and into the future.
The Estate Strategy 2023-2035 will continue the work to modernise and update Merseyside Police’s stations and facilities to ensure officers and staff are in the right places and best equipped to serve communities across the region.
The plan encompasses some major developments including the completion of the refurbishment of Merseyside Police’s busiest operational station, St Anne Street, due to be officially re-opened later this month.
It also includes major new police hubs in St Helens, Wirral, Knowsley and new police stations in Southport and Newton-le-Willows, all of which are due to be completed in the next five years.
During the next 12 years, more than £21.6m is expected to be recouped from the sale of 11 old and unused stations, including Merseyside Police’s former headquarters in Canning Place which is due to go on the market shortly. It also includes the sale of stations on Smithdown Lane and in Bromborough, Maghull and Ainsdale.
By selling outdated buildings that are no longer fit for purpose and replacing them with state-of-the-art new stations, it is anticipated that a further £2.37m will be saved on the annual cost of running the police estate – helping to protect police officer posts.
Nearly £589,000 a year is already being saved on the organisation’s running costs following the move from Canning Place and another office in Brunswick Dock to Merseyside Police’s state-of-the art new headquarters, Rose Hill, which officially opened for business in October 2021, with a further £140,000 being saved thanks to the reduced cost of running the Operational Command Centre in Speke.
The refreshed strategy will also help the drive to make Merseyside Police the most sustainable force in the country. In the past eight years, the organisation has already reduced its carbon reduction by 39%, saved £128,000 by fitting solar panels and a further £200,000 by embedding a reuse policy.
Merseyside’s Police Commissioner Emily Spurrell said: “We are determined to ensure Merseyside Police is fit to fight crime now and into the future.
“To do that, it’s vital we provide state-of-the-art stations and facilities for our officers and staff to put them in the best position to serve our communities.
“This ambitious plan is designed to build on the hugely positive work of the last eight years which has seen our fantastic new headquarters, Rose Hill, open for business, as well as the very effective Operational Command Centre in Speke and a major new patrol new hub on Edge Lane. There’s also been major refurbishments of Bebington, Mather Avenue and Halewood Stations.
“All these projects are already making a huge difference – saving money, ensuring we are more sustainable, and equipping officers and staff with the right working environment to best serve our communities.
“Crime doesn’t standstill though, so nor can we. This bold strategy sets out how we will continue to transform our estate, creating better, brighter, greener spaces for our staff which will enable them to flourish and support my priority of delivering Proactive Policing for the people of Merseyside for many years to come.”
Chief Constable Serena Kennedy said: “The communities of Merseyside should expect to receive the highest quality of service from Merseyside Police.
“In order to have the most efficient police force it is vital that our officers and staff can work in buildings that are fit for purpose and suitable for policing in the 21st century.
“This ongoing investment in our estate means that we can continue to deliver a cost effective and high quality service while supporting the wellbeing of all our officers and staff.
“Merseyside Police remain committed to putting the communities of Merseyside at the heart of everything we do.”
Merseyside Police’s estate currently consists of 74 buildings, two of which were built pre-1920 and nine which opened their doors before 1945. Many of these ageing buildings are inefficient and expensive to maintain and major repairs are required to ensure they are effective and efficient.
Building on all the work from the last eight years, the refreshed Estates Strategy is underpinned by the core principles of sustainability, social value, affordability and supporting operational policing.
It also supports the recent changes made to Merseyside Police’s operating model following the Community First Operational Review (CFOR). Fully implemented in September, the review initiated a series of changes designed to put a greater focus on place, with more dedicated resources into each of the region’s boroughs and more investment in the teams that tackle the issues that matter most to local people.