Fire Service college gets green light
Work is to begin on a new training college for firefighters at Desertcreat later this year after Mid Ulster District Council granted planning permission.
The Cookstown site had initially been planned as a joint training college for the PSNI, Fire and Prison Services but the project, first announced in 2004, was dogged by setbacks.
Now the green light from the council means that the Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue Service (NIFRS) is able to proceed with its learning and development centre, which represents a critical training infrastructure for the service and includes a tactical fire fighting facility over six floors.
Chair of the planning committee, councillor Cathal Mallaghan, believes the decision signals the beginning of significant investment.
Subject to meeting the conditions attached to the approval, NIFRS expects to begin work on the site at the end of the year and construction will take one year.