Warwickshire and West Mercia Police get money to share bases

Plans for a new communication centre for two police forces have been backed with £2.4m of funding.

Warwickshire Police and West Mercia Police want to build a new Operations and Communications Centre (OCC) based across two sites within the force areas.

The money comes from the Police Innovation Fund.

When the new centre opens in 2017 the current OCC base at Shrewsbury will close, police said.

The location of one of the new bases will be Hindlip Park, Worcester, which is already the headquarters of West Mercia Police. The other has not yet been confirmed.

In January 2014, the forces were awarded more than £800,000 towards the centre by the Precursor Police Innovation Fund.

'Best possible service'

The forces said the two new sites will use the same telephone and IT systems, and will deal with emergency calls in "an efficient and effective way".

West Mercia Police and Crime Commissioner, Bill Longmore, said: "It's vital that the police modernise their technology, and this money will help provide state-of-the-art equipment, which in turn helps deliver the best possible service to the public."

Hereford and Worcester Fire and Rescue Service is also planning to move its headquarters from its present location in Worcester to Hindlip Park.

The move would include its control room being co-located alongside police colleagues at that OCC.

It is expected the police and fire service will be able to work together better as a result of the move, the police services said.

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