National property consultancy, Bruton Knowles, has announced that it has secured a significant site for Surrey Police following a 12-month search for a location to allow the force to invest in a new headquarters and operational base.
The 10-acre site, purchased from Allois Properties for £20.5 million, is in Leatherhead and has easy access to the M25 and public transport links – both crucial factors that contributed to its selection.
Bruton Knowles was first instructed in late 2017 to find a location for the force’s new facility – the largest acquisition brief that the Bruton Knowles Public Sector & Blue Light team has delivered to date.
Guy Emmerson, a Partner at Bruton Knowles, is national spokesperson for Public Sector and Blue Light accounts and based at its Guildford office. He heads up the Bruton Knowles project team for Surrey Police: “The site at Leatherhead had been on our radar for some time. It was a very rare find to come across a 10-acre site, in an urban environment, with excellent access to the M25 and public transport. The Guildford team at Bruton Knowles could not be more pleased to be part of this exciting project – a high point in our relationship with Surrey Police built up over many years. Strong team working with all parties involved was an important feature of the acquisition.
“Bruton Knowles works for several police forces across the UK and we are seeing similar needs to rationalise estates, not just to provide contemporary buildings that can provide the best accommodation for modern operational needs but also to focus on future cost-savings. The old and outdated buildings that currently make up the estates of most forces are expensive to run and today, simply not fit for purpose. However, once released these buildings can provide much needed residential and commercial development opportunities for urban centres.”
Judy Gavan is Estate Strategy Manager for Surrey Police: “The support and expertise provided by the Bruton Knowles Guildford team was invaluable in getting us to this exciting stage in our overall plan. Their guidance throughout the process really assisted in keeping to some tight deadlines, and has set us firmly on the path to deliver the PCC’s ‘force fit for the future’ policy and plans to enhance the working environments for the Surrey Police force.”
Temporary Chief Constable Gavin Stephens said: “A state of the art operational base and HQ will enable us to better meet the challenges of modern policing, allow us to be innovative and ultimately provide an even better policing service for the Surrey public.
“Surrey Police has ambitious plans for the future and we’re investing in our people by providing the right training, technology and working environment to meet modern policing challenges.
“Our existing sites are expensive to run and restrict the way we work. Over the coming years we’ll provide our teams with workplaces they can be proud of. Our changes in location will not alter how we respond to, work with, and consider ourselves a part of, Surrey’s many communities. These plans reflect our ambition to be an outstanding force and our commitment to providing high quality policing in the heart of our communities.”