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A little earlier this year, we wrote an article about the importance of make-ready centres for ambulance services. Not only do these centres save the NHS money, but they also increase the speed of ambulance response times.

At a time when the NHS is under more pressure than ever, the announcement from The East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust (EEAST) can surely only be good news. Plans have been created for a new state-of-the-art hub on the outskirts of Bury St Edmunds.

The revamped station – which will be known as a central reporting hub – will be developed at Suffolk Park on the Moreton Hall estate, which neighbours the A14.

The modern building will provide significantly improved facilities for staff, including an outside gym, quiet spaces, a wellbeing garden and fishpond, kitchen and dining area and training rooms.

It will also include a “make ready” zone, where a dedicated team will work around the clock to clean and restock all vehicles to a consistently high standard. This will mean there is always a fully-stocked, cleaned and checked vehicle ready for crews to use so that they can deliver life-saving care to patients faster.

Video courtesy of Corstorphine & Wright.

Jackie Nugent, infrastructure and estates transformation programme lead at EEAST, said: “We are investing significantly in our estates so that we can provide modern, fit-for-purpose facilities for our staff while improving the response we are able to provide to the public.

“The hub in Bury will be first of a number of new stations we develop across the region. It will include an on-site vehicle workshop, which will allow us to bring maintenance in-house and keep more ambulances on the road. The hub will also have 24/7 make ready facilities so that we can make sure our vehicles are prepared to a consistently high standard. This will free up frontline clinicians from doing this prep work so that they can focus on what they do best – caring for patients.

“Importantly, the hub will also provide a vastly improved working environment for our staff and new facilities, such as gym and dedicated welfare spaces where crews can relax between calls, in turn boosting their wellbeing.

“This flagship development will form a blueprint which we will then roll out across the rest of our patch to ensure our committed teams are working from the right buildings and with the right vehicles and equipment to provide the highest quality care to our patients.”

Chawton Hill are looking forward to working with EEAST on this new project. If planning permission is granted, construction will begin in early 2023 with the building operational by summer 2024.

We look forward to bringing you further updates as this project develops.