Manchester

Greater Manchester Police given key to new HQ building

GMP HQ key handover
Image caption A ceremonial key was handed over during the ceremony

Greater Manchester Police (GMP) have been given the keys to its new £64m headquarters in north Manchester.

The building at Central Park, Newton Heath, will replace the force's current Old Trafford base and is expected to house more than 1,000 staff.

Work began on its construction before the government spending cuts and the majority of funding is from Greater Manchester Police Authority (GMPA).

Chairman Paul Murphy said it marked "an exciting new era in policing".

GMP said its current headquarters, Chester House, was "beyond economic repair".

Future investment

Mr Murphy said: "This new HQ building will be the most modern, fit-for-purpose police building in the UK and that is something GMPA is extremely proud of.

"We are at the start of an exciting new era of policing and it is extremely reassuring to know that the police officers and staff who work to keep Greater Manchester communities safe have the 21st Century tools they need to do a good job."

Image caption The building is scheduled to become operational next summer

With construction complete, teams of contractors will now fit out of the six-storey building before staff move in later in 2011.

Ch Con Peter Fahy said: "This building was clearly approved before the spending cuts but actually will prove to be an excellent investment for the future.

"Over the long term it will enable us to reduce our accommodation costs and allow staff to work in new and innovative ways."

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