Cost-cutting fire station closure plans include Longnor

Longnor Fire Station, which is under threat of closure.
Longnor Fire Station, which is under threat of closure.

Fire service bosses have been offering reassurances over concerns for the safety of villagers after Longnor station has been earmarked for closure as part of a cost-cutting scheme.

Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service is considering reducing its 33 stations and 42 appliances to 15 stations and 15 appliances including the closure of Longnor station - just six miles from Buxton.

A fire service spokesman said: “In recent years Staffordshire has been getting safer - demands placed on the emergency response side of the service are reducing.”

The service claims prevention, protection and response activity have been successful in reducing the number of fires and it argued fires involving property and casualties have reduced by 54 per cent between 2003/4 and 2013/14.

It has also invested in new and re-built Community Fire Stations and the service feels fewer resources are needed elsewhere to deal with emergencies.

A service report stated that since 2011 Government funding has reduced by £4 million and it is facing cuts of £5.7m up to 2019/20. But it claims station closures under its New Response Model Community Fire Station scheme could achieve around £4m of savings per year in salaries alone.

Plans include reducing the 499 part-time retained firefighters to none and increasing the whole-time firefighters from 300 to 390 with permanently crewed appliances. To be part of a consultation on the plans, visit www.staffordshirefire.gov.uk.