Meeting over future of city fire stations moved to Milton Keynes

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Fire chiefs have been accused of caving in to public pressure by changing the meeting location over the future of city stations.

Labour councillors have fought a fierce campaign against plans for a ‘blue light’ hub in West Ashland ahead of the final decision on February 10.

This week they celebrated news that the meeting will be held in the MK Council chamber - instead of the authority’s Aylesbury headquarters.

Fire officials say it “made sense” to hold the meeting in MK.

A spokesman said: “Buckinghamshire & Milton Keynes Fire Authority holds one of its meetings in Milton Keynes every year. As we know there will be a great deal of local interest in the 10 February meeting, it made sense for it to be this one.”

Councillor Zoe Nolan has been leading the campaign against creating a new £4.4million hub by merging brigades from Great Holm and Bletchley – and basing police officers in the same building.

She said: “It seemed all wrong to hold a meeting in Aylesbury about the future of the fire station in Great Holm, almost 20 miles away.

“Local people should have an opportunity to attend the meeting and know what is happening to their fire station.

“The fire authority need to listen to our concerns about security and change their mind. I hope residents will attend the fire authority meeting and make it clear to councillors from Buckinghamshire and Milton Keynes that this cannot be allowed to happen”.

Councillor Kevin Wilson who is a member of the fire authority asked for the venue for the meeting to be re-arranged - and called on the authority to withdraw their proposal now.

He said: “I was pleased that the authority agreed to move the meeting. If they have changed their mind they don’t need to wait until the meeting to make that clear.

“They could announce now that they are not closing Great Holm fire station.”

> The meeting will be held at MK Council at 11am, on February 10.