Still looking for that elusive 40 million

The planned Police Training College is already nearly two years behind schedule and still looking to bridge the £40 million shortfall needed to build the £120 million state-of-the-art facility. In the absence of philanthropic intervention, the Policing Board has reportedly decided to ask the Irish Government to stump up the cash.

According to the report, three of the other options available are:

– share part of the facility with the fire and ambulance services, with each making a contribution as they would then use it for training.

– find another location

– significantly reduce the scale of the project.

Apparently, the planned facility would include a police station and college with residential accommodation for more than 300 people, 40 classrooms, two lecture theatres, a research centre, a mock court and sports facilities.

There will also be large, purpose-built areas for what are called simulated training exercises – putting recruits into real life situations they will face when they are on the streets.

If the money doesn’t come from south of the border, a reconvened Assembly can always impose an additional charge on top of the regional rate, to meet the costs.

  • slug

    Perhaps they should scale down the size of the project.

  • Kloot

    Give us Sanchez and a few of your players and its a deal.

  • Kloot

    Seriously though, this is a strange one. I cant understand them sending a delegation to Dublin for funding. I don’t have any particular objections to it, I just don’t understand the logic of it. Is this purely an attempt to embarrass the UK government ?

    Maybe if this was a joint training facility, then yes, but it isn’t, is it ?

  • Pete Baker
  • miss fitz

    From listening on the news, I can add a few bits. The Dublin Government had made a promise of several hundred million euro if and when the Assembly was to function. I understood that the delegation was going to ask for the ROI govt to earmark £40 to match the £90 already committed to the project.

    The ACC interviewed this morning on the radio was very frank about existing facilities. Apparently all they have in Garnerville at present is a phone box and a bus stop for their simulated exercises. They want to create a village with pubs, shops and schools so that they can do real life exercises with actors to give the recruits a better sense of what a real life situation might feel like.

    The conditions sound pretty crap too for the recruits. Garnerville was built as a catering college and was no doubt a ‘temporary’ measure that has been going for years. It was designed to hold 60-70 people but is presently home to a very cramped 200 plus, sleeping in bunk beds with shared sanitary facilities.

    No matter what way you look at it though, it must be sticking in someones throat to have to go cap in hand to themmuns down south and look for help.

  • joeCanuck

    There must be excellent training facilities across the water.
    Wouldn’t it be a lot cheaper to send them there?
    A statelet as small as N.I. can’t afford a world class facility.

  • Kloot

    Is this not more important then the new MI5 facilities being built. Surely the cop on the street needs to be sorted first. They are after all the first line of defence

  • Ulster McNulty

    If it’s going to be a police station combined with 40 classrooms, two lecture theatres and a gym why don’t we just merge a police station with a couple of our defunct secondary schools and – hey presto – a world class facility.

  • Kloot

    If its anything like the ‘world class’ health system that we have in the ROI, it would be up to much!

  • Gonzo

    I think Miss Fitz is probably on the money. My guess is that the Irish National Development Plan for the next five years, which is due to be announced before the end of the month, will include a hefty Christmas bonus for Northern Ireland.

    Since policing is key to so many things here, it seems very reasonable to suspect that the shortfall will be made up of money from this fund.

  • Kloot

    it would be up to much!

    Should have read ‘it won’t be up to much!’

  • CX

    It would be pretty generous of the Irish government to plug the shortfall as part of the St. Andrews Agreement but i’ll bet that would piss the Sinners off mightily…they can’t support the police we have at the minute never mind paying over £100 million to put them in a stronger position.

    Albeit, as a unionist, i am a tad embarrased at having to borrow money off of our southern friends.

    But hey, at least things are moving on!

    And no Kloot you can’t have Sanchez!
    I’ve only just regained enough pride to wear my Northern Ireland shirt in the outside world again and not get laughed at by you or the English.(Or God, even the Welsh.)

  • Ulster McNulty


    “If its anything like the ‘world class’ health system that we have in the ROI, it would(n’t) be up to much!”

    Yes, indeed. I meant to add that the 40m saving gained could be used to cut NHS waiting lists so that the many operable/curable people in Northern ireland who might not otherwise live to see the police college being completed can do so.

  • Gonzo

    A quality policing college is, for the PSNI, essential, given that Garnerville’s on its last legs. Other forces could hire the facilities too, although if the Irish Govt chips in, maybe the Gardai should be allowed free use.

    Now wouldn’t that be ironic.

  • Observer

    “I understood that the delegation was going to ask for the ROI govt to earmark £40 to match the £90 already committed to the project.”

    Surely to God they could do a whip round for 130 quid?;)

  • Yokel

    The cops use military facilities for their mock secnario training. Those facilities will still exist.

  • mnob

    Noone is going cap in hand to the ROI. The plan was to have a *shared* facility for North & South – therefore the ROI should stump up some cash.

  • IJP

    Slug is spot on.

    Do we really need a facility that equates to the FBI Academy for wee Norn Irn?

    Since there has been discussion about joint use of the facility and, in any case, the Republic’s Government currently has a consultative say over such matters in the North, I see no problem with Dublin money – but my point is why is it costing so much in the first place?

  • Frustrated Democrat

    There is a very large facility becoming vacant in Ballymena, the current home of the RIR.

    Whay spend so much when all the infrastructure is in place there. Would be a massive waste of public money.

  • jii8

    we are donating the money we robbed from the northern bank to train our boys when they join the PSNI.

  • martian overlord

    What’s the problem with using Ballykinler as at present?