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Double gold medallist Sarah Ayton officially opens Weymouth's new Community Fire Station.
On Monday 18th July, 2011, the first crew from Weymouth's blue watch will carry out their duties from the brand new, state-of-the-art Weymouth Community Fire Station on Radipole Lane, Weymouth.
The contemporary, eye-catching building will finally be operational after five years of meticulous consultation, planning and construction, and the community resource and 'FireWise' live fire demonstration facilities will be up and running for all to see and use just a few days later.
As well as the operational fire station, the new community fire station element will offer many opportunities for the local and wider community, with the building housing a variety of rooms of many sizes and for many purposes that offer a range of opportunities for promoting safety, education and wider community use. It hosts a huge range of flexible spaces that can be used in creative ways to best serve the local and wider community including a fitness room, IT suite, kitchens and cafeteria for community use, a multi-purpose hall with a sprung floor and staging available, two community rooms, meeting rooms and a universal room.
At the heart of the new facility is FireWise, an innovative and compelling learning opportunity where the visitor experiences realistic fire scenarios to help them to learn how to keep themselves safe. FireWise consists of three rooms; 'before', 'during' and 'after' the fire and is aimed at educating the public by showing them the devastating effects of fire. Groups will be able to view the rooms from behind fully fire-safe glass, watch as the fire takes hold in the room and see the devastating affects in the 'after' suite.
Chief Fire Officer Darran Gunter, said:
"Our new Community Fire Station will provide a first class hub from which we can not only respond to emergency incidents, but also work with local communities within Weymouth and West Dorset to educate people in a wide range of life skills and general safety. It is a stunning example of a modern fire and rescue service protecting their local communities with a balance of prevention and response activities.
"The state of the art education facilities in the FireWise zone will provide a memorable learning experience for people of all abilities and all ages. Additionally, the flexible nature of the design and layout provides fantastic facilities for local communities. It has been a great team effort between DFRS, Weymouth and Portland Borough Council, our constructors Morgan Sindal, local community groups and all associated staff in DFRS, it is again proof of our vision of 'working in partnership to make Dorset safer."
The new community fire station will be open for all to see on Saturday 23rd July when the 'Weymouth Fire Fayre' extravaganza will take place. This community focussed event heralds the public launch of the facility which will be formally opened by local sailing double gold medallist, Sarah Ayton.
The free event, which runs from 10am - 4pm, will provide an opportunity for members of the public to have a grand tour of the building, see FireWise demonstrations, ask any questions they may have and enjoy 'all the fun of the Fayre' to boot. There will be live demonstrations by fire crews in the yard and tower areas, face-painting, FireFit, café, fire engines old and new, police dog displays and much, much more.
Community Safety Education Officer, (whose role it will be to co-ordinate the community resource and FireWise elements), Dave Allan added:
"We are really looking forward to opening the new facility and welcoming members of the public and community groups to what we have to offer. If anyone is interested in committing a few hours of their day per week, we are also looking for volunteers to help out in the café, on reception and in other key areas so please do get in touch if you are interested on firstname.lastname@example.org or call 07917 184189."
Weymouth Community Safety Centre can be found at Radipole Lane, Weymouth, Dorset, DT4 0QF