FIREFIGHTERS in Warwickshire have been making use of the empty Ellen Badger hospital site for training operations.
South Warwickshire NHS Foundation Trust is working with Shipston Medical Centre to develop the Shipston hospital site and re-locate the medical centre.
And before construction work starts Warwickshire Fire and Rescue Services have been using the empty building to run practice exercises.
The fire service has run four training exercises at the site so far and plan to continue them into the new year.
The latest one saw crews from Stratford, Shipston and Chipping Campden take part in a simulation exercise responding to a fire in the building – with reports of a missing person.
Members of the fire service wore breathing apparatus to search the premises for dummy casualties in the dark.
Paul Simmons, a fire safety advisor at the trust, commented on this joined up working: “I am really pleased the trust has been able to support the fire service by facilitating this training exercise. It is very rare that hospital buildings are available for activities like this, so I am delighted we have been able to seize the opportunity and work with our partners to provide this extremely valuable training opportunity.
“The fire service do incredible work on a daily basis so being able to work with them has been really gratifying.”
Watch commander Pete Bell added: “It’s been great to be able to host this realistic training for our crews at the Ellen Badger Hospital in Shipston and we look forward to continuing this into the new year.
“Opportunities to train at such locations are limited but vital to help our crews maintain their skill levels when challenged with these difficult incident types/ locations and we are extremely thankful to the trust and staff at the Ellen badger for being so accommodating.
“None of this would have happened without the excellent planning and support from our crews in Warwickshire Fire and Rescue Service, the trust, and Paul.”