First conference to debate the future of ‘Blue Light’ estates

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The first event of its type bringing together police, fire and rescue and ambulance services with private sector consultants working in estates, property and facilities management takes place in London.

The Blue Light Estates Development Conference, to be held at Kensington Town Hall, will debate the future vision for emergency services estates against a backdrop of funding pressures, including new regeneration and development, consolidation of local services into new and technologically advanced facilities and the disposal of underused or derelict sites.

Blue light organisations set to attend include police forces from; Surrey, North Yorkshire, West Yorkshire, Warwickshire, Devon & Cornwall Police, Avon & Somerset, West Mercia, Hampshire, Cheshire and Wiltshire, as well as the National Police Estate Group and fire and rescue services from Cheshire, Nottinghamshire, Royal Berkshire, Hereford & Worcester and Avon.

Private sector consultants attending include McBains, a consulting and design agency that has worked on several developments in the field including for Greater Manchester, Lancashire Constabulary and the Metropolitan Police.

These also include Community Safety Hub for Cleveland Police that was completed earlier this year and will be officially opened on 16 November 2018.

The conference will discuss the trend for shared blue light and wider community facilities and Cleveland Police’s Community Safety Hub, is a prime example of this.

The bespoke, 3,000 square-metre facility has been designed as an innovative, efficient, and technologically capable building, providing a workspace for policing and wider community partners. Providing open-plan flexible office accommodation, the building contains Cleveland Police’s 999 call centre and Senior Management Team, as well as the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner for Cleveland. The building is designed to achieve cost savings for blue light and community services and fostering connectivity and collaboration between these organisations.

Mark Baseby, Director at McBains, said, “blue light organisations face a number of challenges including tight budgetary constraints and the need for efficiency in the use of space and the importance of value for money.

“Particularly the ‘Tri-Light’ collaborative approach has been reflected in our most recent developments through flexibility in the organisation of our buildings, giving greater emphasis to zones which can be occupied by third-party agencies including fire and ambulance teams.  We expect to see a greater focus on solutions that reflect more of a ‘community approach’, with less focus on a ‘police facility’ and more on a building with a range of community functions.

“The conference provides a unique and invaluable opportunity to bring together a wide range of representatives from across the industry to share best practice, insights and emerging trends”.

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