Plans to replace ageing Hebburn fire station with new base worth almost £8 million and also housing police and paramedics expected to be approved
A long-awaited new fire station in Hebburn could finally be given the green light next week.
Plans for the town to get a revamped base for emergency services have been in the works for several years, but have faced delays from wrangling over land and the coronavirus pandemic.
The facility currently used by firefighters is believed to be the oldest still in use by the Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service.
But proposals for a ‘Tri-Station’ costing almost £8 million and also housing Northumbria Police and paramedics from the North East Ambulance Service is set to be considered by South Tyneside’s development chiefs later this month.
The proposed base, earmarked for land between Marine Drive and Campbell Park Road, in the borough’s Monkton ward, would replace the exisiting Hebburn Community Fire Station, off Victoria Road West, which was built in 1965.
Members of the public have already been given the chance to have their say on the scheme, which is now due to be put to the vote at a meeting of South Tyneside Council’s Planning Committee on Monday, July 18.
A freestanding training building is also proposed, incorporating a two-bay garage and training tower.
During council-led public consultation on the Tri-Station proposals, the local authority received six letters of objection and two letters of support.
Concerns from objectors included increased noise and light pollution, congestion and highway safety issues, negative impacts on wildlife and the suitability of the location.
One comment argued that the Tri-Station would be “unsuitable in the heart of a residential area”.
Elsewhere, scheme supporters included Monkton ward councillors Joan Keegan and Margaret Meling and former Monkton ward councillor Jim Sewell.
According to a planning report, the supporters said the plans would provide a “state-of-the-art” facility for emergency services offering several benefits.
After considering representations, South Tyneside Council planners deemed the scheme acceptable and have recommended it for approval.
A committee report prepared for councillors adds: “Current emergency services facilities in the locality are dated and locationally do not reflect the growth of Hebburn in recent years to the south of the older areas of the town closest to the River Tyne.
“The proposed Tri-Station would provide state-of-the-art facilities for all three emergency services in a central location within Hebburn which is accessible to the community it would be serving.”
According to documents submitted with the application, 15 different sites in Hebburn and Jarrow were considered station, before a final location was selected.
in January last year, Chris Lowther, TWFRS chief fire officer, called the final Tri-Station project “one of the most exciting collaborative blue light community developments that [the fire and rescue service] has led in well over a decade”.
According to documents prepared for the Fire Authority, the final bill on the scheme is expected to be about £7.7 million.
The Planning Committee’s meeting to rule on the application is scheduled to start at 10am at South Shields Town Hall and will be open to the public.
Agenda papers for the meeting can be found on South Tyneside Council’s website.