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Fire Authority withdraws controversial letter after angry reaction from staff

The Fire Brigades Union had claimed there were plans to sack every one of Greater Manchester's firefighters, and only re-employ those who agree to a new contract.

The area's fire service, which has around 1250 frontline firefighters, says it has to save £14 million

But today Councillor David Acton, Chair of Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Authority, said had agreed to withdraw the Section 188 letter issued to the FBU.

Credit: ITV NEWS

“I have taken this step in order to facilitate talks through the Independent Technical Advisory Panel (TAP) on Thursday, September 29, 2016.

“The FBU has confirmed that it will participate fully in the TAP and both parties are entering the talks constructively. This is a welcome move that will allow both parties to engage in discussions about our SDS proposals without the threat of action by either party.

“The TAP will publish its report within 14 days. We must not forget that these changes have been proposed because of continuing cuts by the Government and the Government has imposed a further cut of £14.4m over the next four years.

“Both GMFRA and the FBU are committed to ensuring the safety of the public.”

– Cllr David Acton

Gary Keary from the Fire Brigades Union said the last ten days have caused 'stress and anxiety' for the area's fire fighters.

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Firefighters tackle major fire at former student halls

Ten fire engines were called to Cromwell Road Credit: Leah Dean

More than 50 firefighters have been tackling a fire at former student accommodation in Salford.

Ten fire engines were at Castle Irwell on Cromwell Road overnight trying to contain it. Nobody is thought to have been inside the building.

Smoke from the fire at Castle Irwell student village Credit: Michael Worrall

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Firefighters tackling fire at Pendleton College, Manchester

Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service are tackling a fire that broke out at Pendleton College in Salford.

The fire is believed to involve a classroom on the second floor of the college. Firefighters have been sent in wearing breathing apparatus.

Traffic controls are also being put in place in the area. The Fire Service are urging people to stay away from Dronfield Road in Salford.

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Inquest into death of Stephen Hunt told thick smoke caused firefighters to become trapped

Stephen Hunt died after he was pulled from a blazing shop in 2013 Credit: Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service

The inquest into the death of firefighter Stephen Hunt was told how he and a fellow firefighter lost their way inside a burning shop in Manchester.

The 38-year-old former soldier died after being pulled from a blaze at Paul's Hair World on Oldham Road in 2013.

The jury heard that Hunt had entered the building with his colleague Jeremy Jones, both wearing breathing gear, but the smoke was too thick for the men to see and they became trapped.

Hunt was found collapsed inside the building 40 minutes after he entered and died later in hospital.

Man left homeless after flat fire sparked by candle

A man has been left homeless just days before Christmas after a fire caused by a candle placed on top of a TV. The 44-year old who'd been celebrating his birthday fell asleep at his flat in Bolton and woke up to the sound of his smoke alarm going off, fire crews were called to the property on Haydock Street at just before 5am.

The man was celebrating his birthday and had placed a tea-light candle on top of the TV and then fallen asleep. The candle melted and burned through TV and set fire to the curtains. Luckily the man was woken by a smoke alarm and managed to escape but the fire caused considerable damage to the bedroom and the man will have to be rehomed.”

– Watch Manager Karsten Boyle

It’s the latest in a series of candle related fires in Greater Manchester over the past few weeks. Yesterday two people were taken to hospital after a candle caused a fire at a flat in Hyde. A week ago two people were left homeless after a candle fire in Moss Side which destroyed the roof of two terraced properties. On the morning of Sunday, December 7, three people suffered smoke inhalation after a candle fire in Shaw.

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