Company adds to £300m blue light facility workload

Willmott Dixon is extending its track-record as the UK’s leading constructor of blue-light facilities after being chosen by Humberside Police Force and developer Wykeland Group to take forward a major police building facility that will house over 500 people.

Plans for the £20 million three-storey operational support building at Wykeland’s flagship Melton West business park, west of Hull, have been submitted to East Riding of Yorkshire Council and if approved, construction by Willmott Dixon is expected to start in the third quarter of 2020.

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This is the latest in a national trend by police forces to bring together as many functions and services as possible under one roof in a highly modern environment. The Humberside Police Force development, called Melton 2, will provide 107,000 square foot of accommodation for around 535 staff from the force’s Operational Support Services and is sited next to an existing facility built in 2014, Melton 1, which is home to specialist teams and support staff.

Procured via Major Works England and Northern Ireland, a part of the Scape National Construction framework, Willmott Dixon is working with Bond Bryan architects to take the plans through planning and into construction.

In conjunction with the existing centre, Melton 2 will provide tailored facilities for operations and support staff, supporting greater functional efficiency. The proposed scheme also aims to improve the quality of work and training environments for Humberside Police personnel. It will be a significant new addition to Melton West, which is one of the Yorkshire’s leading business parks and already has more than 800,000 square foot of manufacturing, warehouse and office space.

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Melton West is one of the Yorkshire’s leading business parks

The design includes key sustainable features such as energy efficient heating and lighting systems, the use of environmentally-friendly materials and facilities to encourage staff to cycle to and from work.

Humberside Police and Crime Commissioner Keith Hunter:

“The new development at Melton will, if approved, allow Humberside Police to bring together a number of specialist crime investigation functions, some of which deal with the most serious crimes and vulnerable victims, and provide a new, state of the art force control room which will continue the great progress made in public contact over the last few years.”

For Willmott Dixon, this latest project follows appointments in September last year by Merseyside Police Force to create four storeys of modern office space for up to 1,175 people and West Midlands Police, where Willmott Dixon will deliver a new Control Suite that includes a command and control unit.

It adds to Willmott Dixon’s presence as a major constructor of blue light and custodial facilities, with the company responsible for schemes worth nearly £200m in the last three years as emergency forces make better use of their property to become more efficient, save on running costs and create a better environment for staff and detainees.

Other examples of Willmott Dixon’s work include the 36-cell Birchin Way Custody Suite in Grimsby, 42-cell West Division Police HQ in Blackpool, 40-cell Exeter Police Station, 50-cell Sheffield Custody Suite and Lincolnshire Blue Light Campus, which brings together Lincolnshire’s fire and rescue services, police force and ambulance service under one roof. The company also built a new home for North West Ambulance Service and Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service in Wigan.

Anthony Dillon, manager director at Willmott Dixon:

“We are delighted to be creating an important new hub for Humberside Police. It’s going to provide a smart, efficient environment for the force to deliver policing across the region for many generations to come.”

Mark Robinson, Scape Group chief executive commented, “The government has pledged 20,000 new police recruits over the next three years, therefore we must ensure that the facilities available are both fit for purpose and future proofed for this rapid expansion of officer numbers. By harnessing the extensive experience Scape and Willmott Dixon have in working with police authorities, Humberside Police Force and developer Wykeland Group can be confident their project will be delivered with dedicated expertise and a full commitment to ensure that taxpayers money is spent efficiently and locally.”