FIREFIGHTERS will be taking part in vital training at empty high rise flats in Bingley this weekend.

West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service will be testing out their training for high-rise incident procedures at the Crosley Woods site.

Housing provider Incommunities owns three tower blocks on the site, which overlooks the Leeds Liverpool Canal, and plans to demolish the buildings to make way for a new housing development.

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Residents were moved out of the buildings and re-homed earlier this year.

Before the demolition happens, the organisation is allowing the fire service to use the empty building to take part in search and rescue training in a realistic environment.

New homes planned for site of Crosley Wood flats in Bingley

The crews from across the district will gather outside Brunswick House for the exercise on Saturday morning. On the day, firefighters will set up a base outside Brunswick House.

The event will give firefighters a rare opportunity to train in a high rise residential development - experience that is particularly important after the Grenfell Tower tragedy.

Bradford District Commander, Ben Bush from West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service said: “We are delighted that Incommunities are supporting our district training strategy by providing us access to this empty building.


“These type of buildings give us opportunity to provide a realistic training environment for Bradford fire crews and robustly test our equipment and procedure for incidents such as a high rise building fire.”

Angela Perry, Incommunities’ Assistant Chief Executive, Asset Management said: “We are delighted to make the building available to the fire service and have been liaising closely with them on the arrangements for their exercise.

“The three blocks – Brunswick House, Adelaide House and Peel House – are scheduled for demolition ahead of our exciting redevelopment plans and whilst they are empty it makes good sense to give the local Blue Watch the opportunity to make us of the site.

“We are committed to working with our colleagues from West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service to continually ensure the safety of our communities. Exercises like this show the importance of preparedness and the safety procedures in place across all our high and low rise properties.”

Residents of the flats were first told they would be moved out and re-homed last year, and in February Incommunities announced it planned to demolish the buildings this Summer.

The company said the buildings gas piped needed to be replaced, but the cost was “unviable” as demand for the properties was low.

The demolition will be mechanical, rather than a controlled explosion, and work is expected to last three months.

Incommunities has since proposed to redevelop the site with 93 homes. If the plans are approved, work could start as early as next year.