Sheffield & South Yorkshire

South Yorkshire fire crews lobby MPs over cuts

The Palace of Westminster
Image caption Firefighters plan to talk to MPs of all political parties

South Yorkshire firefighters have lobbied MPs at the House of Commons over cuts to services.

The county's Fire and Rescue Service plans to save £10m by shedding 140 jobs and closing several fire stations.

Consultation on the changes ends on 6 February, with the authority expected to make the final decision soon afterwards.

John Gilliver, of the Fire Brigades Union, said cuts, which must be made by 2015, amounted to "slash and burn".

He also said frontline crews were being targeted and the cuts would "clearly increase risk" to the public and firefighters.

Firefighters spoke to a number of politicians including Labour's Barnsley Central MP Dan Jarvis and Sheffield Hallam MP and deputy prime minister Nick Clegg.

"All the MPs shared our views that cuts should not be affecting members of the public. These are not the right cuts to have," said Mr Gilliver.

But the fire service said in a statement on its website there was "no alternative" because of the extent of the cuts, and it was committed to cutting management and administration costs by 25%.

The service said any new proposals would need to make the same level of savings.

In Sheffield, the fire service plans to close stations in Darnall and Mansfield Road and a part-time station at Mosborough, replacing them with two new stations, near the Sheffield Parkway and Birley.

The station at Royston, near Barnsley, is also planned for closure.

A total of 108 full-time firefighter posts and 32 retained firefighter jobs have been are earmarked under the cuts proposals.

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