Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue recommends station closure and relocation

Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service has recommended closing its station in Budleigh Salterton after months of consultation.

It's one of eight stations that the authority had considered closing as it looks to save £8.4 million.

The service is also recommending to relocate Topsham station to its headquarters in Clyst St George.

Six other stations in Devon and Somerset were earmarked for closure but they will remain open. These are Porlock, Appledore, Wolacombe, Colyton, Ashburton and Kingston.

Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service considered closing eight stations during the consultation. Credit: ITV West Country

READ MORE:

Managers say the service wants to to allocate more money to fire prevention and modernise its operations. This includes investing more in 'on call' staff.

Devon and Somerset Fire & Rescue Service's Chief Fire Officer, Lee Howell, said:

We are presenting a significant investment in our ‘on call’ staff which will directly improve the availability of our fire engines.

Lee Howell, Chief Fire Officer

As well as closing Budleigh Salterton, the service has also recommended removing a number of fire engines from stations.

The full list:

  • Remove second fire engines from Crediton, Lynton, Martock and Totnes.

  • Remove third fire engines from Bridgwater, Taunton, Torquay and Yeovil.

In a series of tweets, newly-elected East Devon MP Simon Jupp described the proposed decision to close Budleigh Salterton as "short-sighted".

During the consultation, which ran during the summer last year (2019), nearly 4,000 responses were submitted by members of the public.

Five petitions were also handed in to the service, with 43,644 signatures.

The proposed changes will be voted on next Friday (10 January).

READ MORE: