The facility was officially opened last week [14 Jan] by Cllr. Liam Galvin, Cathaoirleach of Limerick and replaces the former Limerick City Civil Defence headquarters at Thomas Street, which had operated since 1986.
Acquired by Limerick City and County Council for Limerick Civil Defence at a cost of €310,000, the building contains multiple training/lecture rooms and store rooms, operations and communications rooms, CISM debriefing room, offices, canteen facilities and water rescue equipment stores.
Speaking at the official opening Cllr Galvin said: "As a volunteer-based organisation, Civil Defence members give freely of their time to acquire skills that will be vital to the local community in times of need. Acquiring these skills involves many hours of training, which is why it is why I warmly welcome the development of this new, modern and extensive headquarters facility."
“I have every confidence that this new facility will make an excellent organisation even better by allowing the Civil Defence volunteers to undergo multi-skilled training that will benefit them in their work. I wish the Civil Defence Officer and all volunteer members of Limerick Civil Defence continued success in the future and I would like to pay special tribute to the wonderful volunteer ethos that exists within the local Civil Defence organisation."
The Limerick Civil Defence facility at Annacotty, which formerly operated at the organisation's County Headquarters, will continue to operate as a training centre as well as complement operations conducted from the newly opened Docklands facility.
Ongoing involvement in flood response
Deputy Chief Executive Pat Dowling added: "The Council is committed to ensuring that Limerick Civil Defence is best placed to carry out its multitude of services and activities. In particular, this new facility allows the Civil Defence to host regular and centralised training activities and events for the increasing number of Civil Defence volunteers.
"The involvement of the Civil Defence in the ongoing flood response efforts along the Lower River Shannon and during search and rescue operations highlights the importance of ensuring that members are given access to the proper training facilities and the best equipment."
Limerick Civil Defence continues to support and participate in various local, national and international activities and operations, including land and water based searches for missing persons, emergency responses to weather incidents, and medical cover for Munster and International games at Thomond Park, the International Band Parade, Limerick FC matches at the Markets Field. Limerick Civil Defence members are also engaged in a number of events throughout the year including the St. Patricks Day Festival, Great Limerick Run, Milford Hospice Fair and the UL Sports Kids Run.
Meanwhile, Limerick Civil Defence has announced it is currently training 40 new recruits between the Docklands and Annacotty facilities. A passing out parade is planned for July 2016 when all basic training is completed.