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Campaigners march against proposed fire service cuts

Campaigners in Lincoln are to march this weekend in protest to cuts which could be made to fire services in the county.

Campaigners in Lincoln are to march this weekend in protest to cuts which could be made to fire services in the county. Credit: Defend Our Fire Services

The Defend Our Fire Services march will start at St Martin's Square at the top of the High Street on Saturday 31 January from 11.30am.

Our campaign seeks to increase public awareness of how the proposed cuts to our Fire and Rescue services will impact on response times and coverage. The service has already experienced a significant reduction to its funding and consequently a further £1.23 million of cuts will have devastating affects for both fire fighters and the public. The campaign has developed real momentum so far and over 1000 people have already signed our petition. However, we still need many more signatures and we're calling on everyone who values their local fire services to march with us on Saturday.

– Elaine Smith, Defend Our Fire Services spokesperson

The Fire Brigade Union in Lincolnshire have praised the campaign saying it shows the strength of community support for the fire service:

We thank all members of the public who have thrown themselves into this campaign. It shows how strongly the local community feels about cuts to their fire service.

– Dan Taylor

The chief fire officer for Lincolnshire has argued that the proposals will enable the service to save money without reducing the service:

Obviously any reduction to the fire service is regrettable; however, we are confident that the proposals being consulted on allow us to achieve the required savings while having the least impact on the overall level of service provided. Since 2010, we have increased the number of fire engines crewed by whole-time firefighters on a 24 hour basis from two to nine, and on average our on-call firefighters across the county train for an extra hour each week. During this time there has been no reduction in the number of fire engines or fire stations and we have been able to make significant investments in new appliances and equipment, to allow our firefighters to continue to deliver a first class fire and rescue service for Lincolnshire.

– Dave Ramscar, chief fire officer for Lincolnshire Fire and Rescue

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  1. Anglia

Man attacks two women in Northampton

Image of a suspect who attacked two women. Credit: Northamptonshire Police

Two separate attacks on women in Northampton are thought to have been carried out by the same man.

Images of the suspect have been released following the latest incident on Monday when an 85-year-old woman was assaulted in a burglary in Westone.

In November a woman was sexually assaulted on The Racecourse park. Police believe the same man is responsible for both.

Arrests in connection with thefts from elderly and vulnerable

A man and a woman have been arrested in connection with the theft of thousands of pounds from elderly and vulnerable victims across Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire.

The victims were targeted after visiting cash machines, building societies or post offices.

A 37-year-old man and 32-year-old woman have been arrested on suspicion of theft and remain in custody.

Derby Fire Officer accused of rape told police he had sex with alleged victim.

Sean Frayne

The jury in the trial of Derbyshire's Chief Fire Officer Sean Frayne has heard he admitted having sex with the alleged victim under police questioning, but claimed it was consensual.

Transcripts were presented of an interview carried out by police with Frayne in February 2014.

He is accused of raping a woman at a pub in December 2006.

The court heard today that the 48-year-old admitted to police that he and the woman did have sex, but he said on tape that "she didn't stop me. I didn't stop her."

Frayne was also heard to say "It was as much me as her. It was one if those incidents in life when you look back and think why did I do that?"

He denies the charge of rape. The trial at Derby Crown court continues.

Sean Frayne has been suspended from his position at the Derbyshire Fire and Rescue Service for the duration of proceedings.

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