A sod-cutting ceremony took place this morning (1 February) to celebrate the start of building the new Evesham Fire Station, which is due to be complete at the end of November 2016.
Chief Fire Officer Mark Yates broke the soil, along with Chairman of the Fire Authority Derek Prodger MBE and representatives from Wychavon District Council and Place Partnership.
The opportunity for a new station arose when the Service was approached by Wychavon District Council, who plan to develop the site of the existing fire station into a new Waitrose store as part of the economic regeneration of the town. The council is investing a total of £10million into the town redevelopment project, including contributing £3million towards building the new fire station.
Chief Fire Officer Mark Yates said: “The current station is more than 50 years old and will require significant maintenance costs in the coming years. The new station will be far more efficient and have much lower maintenance costs, which consequently will result in considerable savings for the organisation.”
He continued: “We are delighted that work on the new fire station has now begun. This is fantastic news not only for the Service, but also for the residents of Evesham, who will soon be getting a purpose-built, modern fire station that will help firefighters train and respond in the best way possible.”
Councillor Derek Prodger MBE said: “I am thrilled that we can support Wychavon Council’s attempts to boost the economic vitality of the town and, meanwhile, the Service will get a brand new fire station and training facility. I very much look forward to the completion of the project at the end of the year.”
The new station, which is being project managed by Place Partnership, will be based near Evesham Leisure Centre off Abbey Road. The building will have two floors, three fire engine bays and a state-of-the-art training facility.
Cllr Linda Robinson, Leader of Wychavon District Council, said: “We’re delighted to be playing a part in providing a modern station for our firefighters as well as creating the space to bring Waitrose to Evesham, which will provide a major boost to the town centre.”
Firefighters will continue to operate from the existing station until the new site is complete.
For more information, go to www.hwfire.org.uk