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Custody suite for South Wales Police

42 cell custody suite in Bridgend

South Wales Police appointed Willmott Dixon to design and build this 42-cell custody suite in Bridgend.

The facility provides safe and secure registration, interview, detention and processing of persons in custody, and complies with all Home Office regulations.

Read how our manager won at the Construction Manager awards

Challenges and innovations

Willmott Dixon's design team worked with operational custody staff to ensure a clear understanding of police force custody practice and policy. This speeded up design decisions for the architects.

We used BIM throughout the project, creating a 3D model of a cell which allowed police officers to understand where fittings would be located. Our project team constructed a sample cell and a sample custody desk to help officers understand the design process.

We choose a precast concrete solution for construction of the cells. This resulted in all 42 cells being constructed in just four weeks, a saving of more than five weeks compared to blockwork.

The precast panels were designed to accommodate the lighting and electrical fittings in what is a heavily-serviced building, with over 320 CCTV cameras. Value engineering included changing the specification of light fittings, ceilings, flooring, furniture and some of the CCTVs, which saved the police £160,000.

"Project manager Rob Woolcock’s dedication was unquestionable, ensuring his team approached the project with a can-do attitude."

Gerry Maher, Site supervisor, South Wales Police


Willmott Dixon's suggestion to install LED lights will save the police force £4,500 a year in energy bills.

75% of supplier spend was within 40 miles of the site.


  • Use of precast concrete speeded up construction by four-weeks
  • Involvement of operational police staff to aid design
  • Construction of mock-up cells
  • Use of BIM throughout project
  • Value-engineering of building services saved £160,000




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CF11 0SN

Tel: 029 2022 1002

Fax: 029 2038 8206