Campaign to save second fire engine

Bucks Fire
Bucks Fire
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FURIOUS firefighters in Great Holm are battling to save a permanently crewed fire engine at their station.

The Buckinghamshire Fire and Rescue service is facing huge cuts to its budget, despite promises from Prime Minister David Cameron that front line services would be protected.

But it has emerged that budget restrictions will hinder the fire service in Milton Keynes.

Great Holm looks set to lose its second continuously crewed fire engine from its station as part of the cutbacks.

Not only that, but the number of firefighters carried on a fire engine will be reduced from five to four, which could mean that some important safety procedures may not be fully carried out to protect the crews and those they are fighting to rescue.

A website has been created and leaflets distributed alerting people to the cuts and urging them to lobby local politicians and the Fire Authority.

Chief Fire Officer of the Buckinghamshire Fire and Rescue Service Mark Jones said they are working within a very tight budget.

He said: “We are one of the poorest funded fire authorities in England in terms of governmental grants over recent years. In spite of this fact, and the continued tough financial climate we operate in, we achieved a managed underspend of £1.5 million of taxpayers’ money in 2010/11.

“We are looking at how the organisation can achieve the required spending reductions with minimal impact to front line service provision over the next four years.

“Reports of a reduction in full-time fire cover in any area we serve are misleading. The implementation of a decision taken by the authority some years ago to crew fire vehicles in a more flexible manner does not represent a greater risk to those we serve.”

For more information on the Great Holm campaign, visit www.saveyourfireengine.org