BREAKING NEWS: Fire service amalgamates control rooms

Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service HQ to be at Exeter.

A control room at Exeter is to become the official headquarters of Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service.

News of the move was announced this morning (Friday).

Councillor Mark Healey, chairman of the service’s managing body, said: “This is long overdue and will result in a control room that will meet the needs and expectations of the people of Devon and Somerset while providing a modern facility that staff will be proud to be associated with.”

He added staff will be involved in all stages of the consolidation.

He said: “Fire control staff know what is needed from their perspective and the public so it is important that we not only listen to their views but act upon them.”

A lease on the former Somerset fire control room, located at Hestercombe House, Taunton, is due to expire in October 2012.

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The fire and rescue service authority says, due to access issues, operations will need to cease from this location earlier than that date.

Assistant Chief Fire Officer Pete Smith said: “The consolidation of fire control will provide a number of significant benefits including a stronger and more resilient control function, a security for our staff and a better service for our communities.”