The site was the base for Mersey Regional Ambulance Service before its merger with other North West services in 2006 forming our trust North West Ambulance Service (NWAS), and for some years later, it acted as our Cheshire and Merseyside’s area office, housing a 999 and 111 call centre. In 2019, our staff based there were moved to a new build site on the Estuary Point estate in Speke.
Now the property is to be demolished to build a new base for Merseyside’s Hazardous Area Response Team (HART) which is made up of specially trained paramedics who attend incidents that have the potential to be more dangerous, those which require a more specialised set of skills, or incidents that are declared a major incident, such as fires/explosions, unsafe structures and those involving chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear or other hazardous materials, such as a gas leak.
Before the planning application was submitted, the trust consulted with residents and is delighted that the green light has been given to go ahead with the project.
Assistant Director of Resilience, Steve Hynes comments: “Our Merseyside HART team has been based at a site owned by Mersey Fire and Rescue up until now, but it is time they had a new home and what better than a site we currently own?
“HART members have a complex range of vehicles and equipment and have stringent training needs and so this site will include all of that and enable them to quickly respond to incidents throughout the Cheshire and Merseyside area. Staff are looking forward to having a state-of-the-art base with modern facilities and we are delighted that we can transform a site that has been a part of the ambulance service for many years.”
The site will include office accommodation with training classrooms, offices and meeting rooms, a gym and a large garage, while externally, the large radio tower will be replaced with a training climbing tower.
We will be working with Wates Construction Group to deliver the project, with work set to start in March, with an estimated move-in date of June 2025.
Sarah Cooke, Regional Director for North West – Construction, at Wates, said: “The Elm House site redevelopment provides a state-of-the-art environment that will support the vital work carried out by the ambulance service for years to come. We’re honoured to have been chosen to deliver it and we look forward to getting started on site.
“We have extensive experience delivering new facilities for other blue light organisations, such as Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service, and know the positive impact these modern schemes have – not only on those that work in them, but for the wider community. As with all our projects, we’ll be working closely with NWAS and other local stakeholders to deliver both an exemplary build and a multitude of social value initiatives that support the entirety of Merseyside.”
During the construction phase, both ourselves and Wates will also be working together on a community engagement programme to ensure residents are kept up to date with progress and local children and young people can have the opportunity to get involved in the new venture.