Retford faces fire cover cut

Bob Mould - FBU Brigade Secretary, Nottinghamshire.  Pictured outside Worksop Fire Station.  (w101231-1b).
Bob Mould - FBU Brigade Secretary, Nottinghamshire. Pictured outside Worksop Fire Station. (w101231-1b).

FIRE cover in Retford looks set to be slashed by half after the fire authority launched a 12-week consultation on service cuts.

Notts and City of Nottingham Fire Authority met last week to discuss a county-wide shake up of frontline services.

Public opinion is now being sought on the proposed changes which will see 12-hour day crewing introduced at Retford Fire Station.

A wholetime fire engine currently serves Retford and surrounding area 24 hours a day.

Under proposals this crew would be relocated to Worksop, with Retford supported by a volunteer, or retained crew and neighbouring stations.

Notts Fire Brigade Union vice-chairman Bob Mould said he thought the changes at Retford had been pushed through without any thought of other options.

“It appears frontline services are being hit hardest without looking at other options,” he said.

“My fears are for the public who may not get the proper fire service they deserve.”

Notts fire authority must save £6.5 million over the next four years after a cut in Government funding.

Money saving measures could see 16 senior officers, 20 watch managers and any number of firefighters lose their jobs.

Coun Sybil Fielding who sits on the fire authority panel said decisions would be difficult and regrettable.

“We have got to put resources where they are most needed, which is what these proposals aim to do,” said Coun Fielding.

“But I believe frontline services could have been protected by a small increase in the fire authority precept.”

“Liberal democrat and conservative fire authority members voted against increasing council tax.”

“I for one would like to have seen a public consultation on a modest rise to protect jobs and the community.”