A former factory in Birmingham has been given a new lease of life as a training ground for police dogs.
The Thomas Walker building, in St Paul's Square, is to be transformed into 192 prestige apartments by Jewellery Quarter-based property developers Chord.
In the meantime, the former buckle makers, which closed in 2003 when its owners moved to more modern premises, is being put to good use as a training venue by West Midlands Police.
The force has one of the biggest police dog training centres in the country at Balsall Common, which is responsible for training 69 handlers and their dogs. Dogs are also bred at the centre.
A range of dogs, including Alsatians, Rottweilers, springer spaniels and Belgian malinois, are used by the force to accompany police on the beat and for special operations, such as drugs, firearms or explosive searches.
In addition to providing tuition at their Balsall Common base, the training centre is regularly on the look out for alternative venues, such as large empty premises, farms and sports facilities, where they can set up realistic training scenarios.
Pc Ned Barker, an instructor at the centre, is currently putting teams of four officers and their dogs through their paces at the Thomas Walker building.
He said: "We rely on the goodwill of the community to provide us with training venues.
"There are a number of buildings which make up the Thomas Walker site. It has large open areas, factory and warehouse space, and office accommodation. We plant both men and matter around the building, which the dogs are then tasked to find.
"Dogs provide invaluable back-up to police officers. They are quick, efficient and safe. We are grateful to companies like Chord for enabling us to use their facilities to ensure that our dogs are trained to the highest possible standards."
Andy Cronin, associate director at Chord, said: "It is great to see the building being put to good use while we finalise the planning and design of the new apartments.
"The police presence is also a welcome addition to our on- site security arrangements. It's a case of everybody wins."
Property owners able to offer land and premises for police dog training should contact Sergeant Steve Jennings at the Police Dog Training Centre, Balsall Common, on 01676 535636.