Allerton fire station under threat

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Allerton Fire Station © Flickr/Colin Gould

Allerton Fire Station © Flickr/Colin Gould

New cost-cutting measures set to be announced this week may mean that Allerton fire station could be closed.

Merseyside fire service bosses are planning to axe the station based in Mather Avenue and transfer the one fire engine there to Old Swan.

Lyndsay Young from Merseyside’s Fire and Rescue Service Corporate Communications department, said: “The Merseyside Fire and Rescue Authority are meeting on October 2 to consider a report on a proposal to close Allerton Community Fire Station, following a consultation.

“A 12-week consultation on the proposal will then take place before any final decision on the station would be made.”

In the report ahead of the meeting, Chief Fire Officer Dan Stephens said: “We have had to make savings of £20 million up to this point with another £6.5 million savings to be made from next April. If the trajectory of cuts continues, we will have to make another £15 million of savings up to and including 2020.”

He also says the closure of a fire station in Liverpool is “unavoidable” due to government funding cuts.

“We have had significant cuts to our budget from central government to the point where we can no longer afford to keep all of our existing stations open.”

The fire service on Merseyside must make savings of £6.5m in the next financial year, and £3.4m of this will come from stations closing and merging together.

The plan to close the Allerton station will be subject to an opinion-gathering exercise which will last 12 weeks. A decision will then be made on whether or not the station will close.

Fire chiefs also plan to shut Huyton and Whiston stations and build a replacement facility on land off Manchester Road, Prescot. This move is expected to be given the green light at the meeting on Thursday, after a public consultation of 93 Knowsley residents found nearly 80% thought the plan was reasonable.

A response to the Allerton closure proposals is being prepared by the Fire Brigades Union, which represents rank-and-file officers.

About Rebecca Cookson, JMU Journalism