|New police station officially opened in Bamfurlong
A new police station was officially opened in Bamfurlong, Wigan, yesterday when the Rt Hon Ian McCartney MP unveiled a commemorative plaque to mark the occasion. The station is the ninth Greater Manchester Police facility to be built with Private Finance Initiative investment.
The new Bamfurlong deployment station, which became operational on December 13 2004, is situated on Bryn Gates Lane. It is part of GMP's Estates Strategy to improve facilities across the Force. The Estates work is being carried out by the Equion (a division of John Laing plc) under a £78 million contract placed by the Greater Manchester Police Authority.
The PFI partnership aims to ensure that Greater Manchester Police facilities meet the needs of modern policing to provide members of the public with the most effective and efficient service available.
The new deployment station is the ninth of 17 new police facilities being built on 16 sites in Greater Manchester. The facilities include a variety of area headquarters, deployment stations and a new traffic headquarters in Eccles.
Wigan's Divisional Commander, Chief Superintendent Ian Harrison said: "The move to the brand new police station at Bamfurlong will ensure that our service meets the needs of the local community now and in the future.
"It provides a modern base for our officers and partners to deliver an up-to-date and innovative operational police service for the people of Ashton in Makerfield, Platt Bridge, Abram, Ince and Hindley.
"This new facility is an integral part of the restructure of the Wigan division, guaranteeing stronger bonds between officers based there and the local communities they serve. I am confident that our new station will enable us to make the surrounding area a safer place to live work and play. It will only add to the ability of the local Inspector, Jeff Crank and his team, to build on the good work carried out since the restructure in further reducing levels of crime, taking the fight against crime to the criminal and making our communities safer."
Derek Osbaldestin, Chair of the Greater Manchester Police Authority, said: "The Authority is working hard to ensure that the best possible facilities are available to Greater Manchester Police. This new station at Bamfurlong is one of 17 being built under a Private Finance Initiative contract placed by the Authority and which are contributing to the development of a better-equipped and more effective police service.
"The station is right in the heart of the community and ensures a highly visible presence for the police and good working conditions for the officers who will serve local people from here."
Richard Weston, managing director of Equion said: "Equion has worked closely with the GMPA and Greater Manchester Police throughout the finance, planning, design and construction process, and are extremely proud to be opening Bamfurlong deployment station today, which is the ninth out of the eventual 17 facilities that comprise this successful PFI project.
"We have strived to ensure that Bamfurlong and all of the stations in this project are provided with the right facilities and technologies to allow the police to carry out their jobs to the highest standard. We look forward to continuing our involvement in Bamfurlong through providing essential support and maintenance services at the new station, allowing the police to focus on their public service role."
Bamfurlong police station has been built to provide an improved policing facility for Ashton in Makerfield, Platt Bridge, Abram, Ince and Hindley. It includes a modern reception area and a vehicle response centre, while offering a good geographical location central to the area.