From radio to mobile phone technology- London’s Emergency Services

17 July 2017

Since 2009, the emergency services have used Airwave, a radio-based system, to communicate, including on the London Underground. The new Emergency Services Network (ESN) aims to deliver numerous improvements on Airwave, including providing high-speed data to users, more flexibility to make use of new technologies, and securing cost savings. 

However, the Public Accounts Committee has warned that without solutions to technology and delay issues, the emergency services may not be able to communicate with each other between March 2020, when Airwave is scheduled to stop working, and September 2020, when the transition to ESN is complete. 

  • Why the delay to the ESN?
  • When will London to begin transition to the ESN?
  • What is the aim of the ESN programme, and what improvements will it deliver on Airwave?
  • Will it be ‘at least as good’ as Airwave?
  • Who will be funding the ESN?


Tomorrow, the GLA Oversight Committee will examine high-level progress with the development of the Emergency Services Network (ESN) in London, key risks and issues, and the role of the Mayor and the GLA Group in the ESN programme.

The guests are:

  • Stephen Webb, Director, Law Enforcement Programmes, Home Office
  • Gordon Shipley, Programme Director, Emergency Services Mobile Communications Programme (ESMCP), Home Office
  • Shashi Verma, Chief Technology Officer and Director of Customer Experience, Transport for London
  • Angus McCallum, Chief Information Officer, Metropolitan Police Service
  • Siobhan Peters, Chief Finance Officer, MOPAC
  • John Anthony MBE, Programme Director for ESN Transition, London Fire Brigade
  • Julian Martin, Head of ICT, London Fire Brigade
  • Vic Wynn, Acting Director of IM&T, London Ambulance Service
  • Kevin Bate, Deputy Director of Operations, London Ambulance Service
  • Ian Hough, National Service Director, Ambulance Radio Programme

The meeting will take place on Tuesday, 18th July from 10.00am in The Chamber, at City Hall (The Queen’s Walk, London SE1).

Media and members of the public are invited to attend


The meeting can also be viewed LIVE via webcast or  YouTube

Follow us @LondonAssembly and take part in the meeting discussion using #ESN

Facebook @london.assembly

Notes to editors

  1. Read the London Assembly July 7 Review Panel Report from 2006
  2. Full agenda papers
  3. Len Duvall AM, Chair of the GLA Oversight Committee, is available for interview – see contact details below.
  4. The GLA Oversight Committee.
  5. As well as investigating issues that matter to Londoners, the London Assembly acts as a check and a balance on the Mayor.


For media enquiries, please contact Alison Bell on 020 7983 4228.  For out of hours media enquiries, call 020 7983 4000 and ask for the London Assembly duty press officerNon-media enquiries should be directed to the Public Liaison Unit on 020 7983 4100.