Closure of Staffordshire Scientific Services
The Staffordshire Public Analyst laboratory closed its doors to new samples before Christmas. The closure was covered in an article in “Food Quality News” Now, the work complete, the equipment sold off and the staff dispersed, the interior of the building is being gutted.
Staffordshire’s last resident Public Analyst, Michelle Evans, writes:
The Staffordshire Public Analyst Laboratory was set up in its Martin Street, Stafford location in the year 1929. It was built on the site of the Playhouse Theatre (shown in the photograph), formerly known as The Lyceum Theatre. Built in 1792, the theatre was visited by Charles Dickens during his brief stay in Stafford in the 1840s. That building was damaged by fire in 1912, repaired and used as a warehouse by J. Brookfield and Son who produced animal feed, before being demolished in the 1920s
Since its inception the laboratory has provided an extensive range of testing on samples of foodstuffs, animal feeds, waters and consumer products amongst others. Initially, samples were analysed only for Staffordshire County Council but over the years this progressed into investigations for other authorities and district councils; latterly the service had been testing more samples from private bodies than public ones, an indication of the tremendous decline in samples numbers from local authorities in recent years.
In the summer of 2017 a review paper recommended the closure of the now-named Staffordshire Scientific Services, this recommendation was then approved by the Council’s Cabinet. So, at the end of February 2018 the laboratory closed its doors for the final time after nearly 90 years of helping to protect the public. It’s a very sad time.