Interactive ESN workshops launched

A series of online workshops is being launched to guide control room leaders through the transition to the new Emergency Services Network (ESN), which will transform how their teams operate and communicate.

Jul 2, 2020
By Paul Jacques
Mike Isherwood and Gordon Meldrum.

The ESN, a state-of-the-art LTE (long-term evolution) communications network for the UK’s emergency services, is due to go live within the next 18 months.

The interactive online workshops run by APD Communications will guide critical control room operations and teams through the changes.

Participants will be able to learn from, and ask questions of, experts who are helping to lead the transition, including APD managing director Mike Isherwood, and APD’s strategic policing adviser Gordon Meldrum QPM, former Director of Intelligence at the National Crime Agency.

Communications technology specialist APD, which last year became part of Northgate Public Services, a wholly-owned subsidiary of NEC Corporation, was awarded a Home Office contract to develop critical software to enable blue light organisations and other public services to integrate with the ESN.

The workshops are part of a 12-month programme and are aimed at senior emergency services officers with responsibility for contact, command and control operations, as well as communications and human resources colleagues.

APD says the content will be tailored to include how those managing the transition can help their control room teams to adapt, as well as how they roll out new devices, with step-by-step support, advice and reassurance on “managing such a significant technical, operational and cultural change”.

Mr Isherwood said: “We know emergency services and organisations in the critical control field are excited by this change, but that they also appreciate the scale and risks associated with the challenge.

“We have been working with LTE and control room change for many years and have built up considerable knowledge and expertise. We want to share that with people who are focused on making the change a success within their organisations.

“We’re planning a series of workshops and the content will be shaped by the participants as they evolve. We’re here to help those who take part to feel confident in every aspect of the transition – we’re on a journey together.

“It would be great if delegates can join for the full programme, but we’re structuring it so they can easily catch up with previous sessions. We will also provide useful resources for participants to take away and work through to check they’re on track for going live.”

The first workshop, run through Microsoft Teams live events, will take place on July 9 with more dates to follow, on a monthly basis. Each session will run for an hour, followed by 30 minutes of questions.

Participants will be able to submit questions in advance of each workshop and take part in live discussions, as well as participating in a Q&A with all those involved.

Participation is open to all organisations affected by the ESN transition. Spaces are limited and will be allocated on a first come, first served basis.

To register for the first workshop, go to To qualify, registration must be completed using an email with an official domain related to a UK emergency services organisation.

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