Martin Read News Reporter
Local residents are to have the opportunity to comment on proposals to relocate Horsham Fire Station at a new purpose built facility to be shared with the police and, possibly the ambulance service at an already publicly owned site at Highwood, at the junction of the A24 and A264 near Broadbridge Heath. The proposal is part of the well-established One Public Estate programme delivered in partnership by the Local Government Association and the Office of Government Property via the Cabinet Office. The programme was launched in 2013 with just 12 areas but today works in conjunction with more than 300 councils on projects transforming local communities and public services right across the country, the plan being to maximise the use of public land improving public services, providing one million new homes and further developing transport infrastructure. In Sussex, the One Public Estate programme already includes projects at Crawley across a number of sites, including the Town Hall and County Buildings, at Burgess Hill – where a new tri-service blue light centre, housing and commercial space is planned – and at Chichester, where the redevelopment of a number of sites is in prospect. Other plans are also being developed at Littlehampton, Shoreham and Worthing.
Long standing local residents will recall the previous separate arrangements for public services, including premises within the confines of Horsham Park (Fire Service) and the old Police Station in Barttelot Road in the town. When those sites were vacated the opportunity was taken to bring the services together in Hurst Road. The plan is now to have the blue light emergency services working even more collaboratively with the creation of the best possible, fit for the future arrangements, incorporating outstanding training facilities not currently available locally, with a public facing front counter for the police, an on call Fire Service, and, potentially South East Counties Ambulance Service all operating from the one new site. Relocating such arrangements would free up a substantial area, with much needed land for housing and commercial use for redevelopment in Horsham’s Hurst Road in accordance with local and national planning strategies, creating employment in support of local economic growth. Further information is available at https://haveyoursay.westsussex.gov.uk/policy-and-comms/horsham-fire-station/. Residents are also encouraged to visit drop in sessions at Horsham Library this Saturday between 10-12 or on Thursday September 13th between 17.00 and 19.00 and there is email contact available at firstname.lastname@example.org together with the 01243 777100 contact number