Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 8°C

min temp: 8°C


Suffolk: Muted response to police boss’s single blue-light control scheme

08:00 15 April 2014

Tim Passmore, Suffolk Police and Crime Commissioner

Tim Passmore, Suffolk Police and Crime Commissioner


A concept by Suffolk’s Police and Crime Commissioner for a centralised ‘blue-light’ control room based in the county has been met with a muted response.


Tim Passmore has floated the idea of a single site for the despatching of fire, police and ambulance services.

Currently the ambulance control centre is based in Hellesdon, Norfolk, while the fire service’s 999 centre is located in Cambridgeshire.

Mr Passmore has said he is keen to look at any alternatives to relocating Suffolk Constabulary’s command and control room to Norfolk as part of a cost-cutting exercise.

However, in response to the possibility of there being a Suffolk-based emergency service control centre in the future, a spokeswoman for the ambulance service said: “The East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust already has very good control room arrangements in place that serve local communities well.

“Our staff work very hard to provide high quality services and advice to callers whilst an ambulance is on its way.

“The work of ambulance control staff is closely connected to many parts of the wider NHS, such as acute hospitals, and we are not part of any discussions about a single joint emergency control room in Suffolk.”

A spokesman for Suffolk County Council, in relation to the county’s fire service, said: “Our agreement with Cambridgeshire for the delivery of control services has a five-year term. The agreement has been in operation for just over three years and therefore has two remaining.

“However, the arrangements can be extended further, where desired. The current arrangements are operating successfully.”

Speaking at a meeting with Babergh residents at East Bergholt High School last Wednesday, Mr Passmore said: “I do think one of the alternatives I should be looking at is in two or three years if we don’t go ahead with the control room (merger) what about the linking of the blue lights services – ambulance, police, fire and coastguard – here in Suffolk?”

Douglas Paxton and Simon Bailey, chief constables of Suffolk and Norfolk respectively have put forward the business case for a combined control room, probably based in Wymondham. They estimate this would save £1.84million a year.

Due to their Government grants continually being slashed, Suffolk and Norfolk police need to find combined savings of £36.7m by March 2018. Suffolk’s shortfall is said to be £16.4m.


1 comment

  • Passmore seems to be ignoring the fact that ambulance dispatchers need a completely different skill-set to police or fire brigade dispatchers. Not only do the ambulance dispatchers need enough specialist medical knowledge to properly prioritise 999 calls, they also often need to talk callers through how to care for a casualty while the ambulance is on its way. Could be rather iffy when plod dispatchers pick up ambulance calls, to say the least.

    Report this comment


    Tuesday, April 15, 2014

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

Woman conned by bogus caller (Stock photo)

A Hadleigh woman who lost £2,500 in a police scam has warned others to be alert to the crime.

Members of the nursing team at Ipswich Hospital.

Carers and visitors of people being looked after at Ipswich Hospital will next month be able to spend more time with patients as new extended visiting hours are introduced.

She was last seen in the area of Downside Close in Ipswich.

Concern is growing for a 49-year-old woman who has gone missing in Ipswich.

Part of Sue Brooks' photograph of pupils and staff at Fonnereau House School, Ipswich, in 1952. Are you in the picture?

I recently asked readers if they had memories of Fonnereau House School, Ipswich, which was in Fonnereau Road, close to High Street.

Essex police are investigating a robbery at Jaywick.

An 88-year-old Essex man suffered a broken hip when he was knocked to the ground by robbers who burst into his Jaywick home.

Doors reopen on the new look East of England Co-op Daily store in Woodbridge Thoroughfare. Staff members, left to right, Chloe Williams, James Buckles, Shirley Pierce.

Shoppers were greeted by the sight of a new-look Co-op on their high street yesterday, when a Suffolk branch of the store reopened following three weeks of refurbishment.

HGV drink-driver in court

A lorry driver carrying a trailer full of wine has admitted dangerous driving when weaving between lanes on the A14 while three times over the drink-drive limit.

Dan Poulter with Lord Robert Winston

ES 18.3.11

Suffolk County Council’s cabinet training day at Elstree film studios in Hertfordshire has come under fire from Conservative MP and former minister Dr Dan Poulter.

South East Suffolk Magistrates' Court

A teenager must pay nearly £300 in fines and court costs after admitting being drunk and disorderly in Kesgrave.

Ipswich Park and Ride. Martlesham.

The two remaining park and ride sites in Ipswich could close in three years’ time if there is not a substantial increase in the number of motorists using them.

Most read

Most commented

Topic pages

Local business directory

Suffolk's trusted business finder

Property search

e.g. Oxford or NW3
Powered by Zoopla

Digital Edition

Read the Ipswich Star e-edition today E-edition

Great British Life

Great British Life
MyDate24 MyPhotos24