Interim Police Control Centre (IPCC)


In order to provide resilience for the Sellafield site the Civil Nuclear Constabulary (CNC) require availability of a minimum of two fully operational and fully redundant security control rooms.

 The IPCC was required while a permanent replacement control room was designed and constructed. The IPCC needed to also allow maintenance, training and control operations to take place without impacting on normal operations. Tenet was contracted by Sellafield Ltd. to produce both a preliminary and a detailed design. The contract value was approximately £125,000.

Services Provided

Tenet developed an innovative approach by reusing the maintenance equipment facility to allow the configuration and trial of future equipment without losing capacity or capability in any of the operational control rooms.

The design included provision for multiple operators’ stations, visual display units, IT infrastructure and communications systems.

Tenet were responsible for the design package which included:

  • Site surveys and as-built drawings;
  • Ergonomic reviews;
  • Drawings: Cable Schedules, Block Cable Diagrams, Room Layouts;
  • Documents: Installation Specification, Equipment Procurement Specification, Plant Item Schedule, Migration Strategy;
  • Health and Safety Assessments;
  • Design reviews, project plans, progress meetings and reports;
  • Overall project design validation review.


The IPCC design was required to integrate with another concurrent project undertaken by CHUBB and AMEC to upgrade the security video switch capability.

Additionally Mott MacDonald was responsible for other areas within the scope of work, including power distribution, cable routing and equipment installation. Tenet initiated and lead communication with the other parties so that design information could be easily exchanged. This was an excellent example of Tenet applying the principles of partnering and developing close working relationships with other key stakeholders. Tenet conducted regular design reviews, which allowed a face-to-face information exchange. By communicating in an open and transparent manner with the other partners in the design project, Tenet could confidently assure its client that the control room design would successfully interface with the new video switch. Tenet actively shared information with its design partners so that all parties could meet their objectives. Tenet then substantiated the design work for technical accuracy. To provide the client with complete confidence that all the separate designs would integrate successfully, Tenet conducted an overall project design validation to ensure compatibility, maintenance of the original design intent and that earlier designs met the required standards.


Tenet made cost savings where appropriate, while maintaining the design intent and functionality required by the CNC. This was achieved by researching, identifying and recommending commercial available off-the-shelf equipment that met the requirements stated in the Equipment Procurement Specification produced by Tenet.

Cost savings were achieved by minimising the requirement to buy specialist equipment, thus providing value for money. The minimal lead time resulted in the procurement process being accelerated and the installation phase being accelerated within the project schedule. Tenet conducted site surveys and assessed the condition and suitability of the existing cables to interface with the new equipment. This reduced the material and manpower costs associated with providing all new cables.

Part of Tenet’s design proposal was to use high quality, proven technology to enable the control room operators to focus on monitoring site security and emergency response. Our design specified that the network cables installed in the control room allowed for future expansion and upgrade of connected equipment, thus allowing for the integration of new technology innovations. Image processors were incorporated into our design to display multiple video signals on a single screen. This reduced the number of screens to be purchased, created a smaller footprint of displays and provided the same amount of visual information to the operators, adding value to the client. In order to maintain a comfortable working environment for the operators and reduce the heat loading on the room’s air conditioning system, our design proposal recommended rack-mounted PC chassis to be installed in 19” equipment racks. These racks were then located outside of the control room. Removing this equipment improved the environmental conditions in the IPCC and created additional working areas for the operators.

One of the key considerations for the entire project was migrating the video signals to the IPCC without loss of service. Tenet added substantial value to the project by producing a detailed migration strategy document as a deliverable. This enabled the new control room to be successfully brought to an operational state without reducing the level of surveillance coverage during the process. This illustrates Tenet’s ability to integrate their design skills with operational considerations.

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Key stakeholder engagement was required to overcome any potential problems due to the complex process of two designs being developed simultaneously.

Tenet implemented a communication plan and lead open and transparent interactions with all the project partners. With Tenet validating the overall project design, the client was assured that the final security system would operate as required and meet the original design intent. Actively sharing information with our partners in the design process allowed them to meet their design commitments without impacting on the project schedule. The inclusion of readily available standardised equipment in our design reduced costs and decreased the time spent on procurement, allowing the installation phase to proceed ahead of schedule. Producing a detailed migration strategy document proved invaluable in bringing the control room to an operational state without jeopardising site security and represented substantial additional value to our client.

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