|The super centre: New depot officially opened
Maisie Johnson with her winning design and Councillor Billy Rotherham, Mayor of Wigan Borough, Lord Peter Smith, Leader of Wigan Council, Mayoress Janet Lumley.
A pioneering new depot in Wigan has been officially opened.
The new facility in Ince – dubbed the super-depot – has cost £3million to build but will save the authority an estimated £1million a year. It is home to 350 council staff and has brought together nine different council teams who were previously based at three different sites.
Staff at the giant depot on Makerfield Way are responsible for services including highways maintenance, street lighting, waste collection, vehicle maintenance and council house repairs.
The depot will save the council money by slashing the costs of fuel, logistics and maintenance. The total cost to develop and build the site will be earned back in savings over four years. The cost to repair the council’s three previous depots would have been £1million to complete. These sites have now been closed and earmarked for development.
The Mayor of Wigan Borough, Cllr Billy Rotherham, officially opened the depot by revealing a plaque designed by ten-year-old Maisie Johnson from Ince. The Year Five pupil from St. Benedict’s Catholic Primary School in Hindley won a competition to find the winning design.
Councillor Kevin Anderson, Wigan Council cabinet member for the environment, said: “This state-of-the-art facility is probably the best example of a modern council depot in the country. In brings together a range of council services in one central hub. This will improve services, reduce the council’s carbon footprint and save money by cutting maintenance, transport and other running costs.
“In the future we will be able to expand at this site because we have built in extra capacity and that will offer opportunities for growth in the future. I’m proud that at times of difficulty for councils, we’ve invested in a scheme that will save money in the future and ensure we have in Wigan Borough the best facilities for our residents and staff.”
The council is currently planning to recruit 30 apprentices who will be based at the depot. As there are so many different services based at the depot, these young people will be given training in a variety of different trades.
Terry Dunn, Wigan Council’s director of environment who first joined the council as an apprentice, said: “We hope to announce details of the apprenticeship scheme very soon. Moving to this fantastic new facility has given us a unique opportunity to recruit young talent into the council. They will be trained in the kind of modern setting that was unimaginable when I started out on my career.”