Firefighters strike again

The Bolton News: Red Watch firefighters at Bolton Central Fire Station keep warm during their strike earlier this year Red Watch firefighters at Bolton Central Fire Station keep warm during their strike earlier this year

FIREFIGHTERS based in Bolton went on strike again over the weekend as a row over pensions rumbles on.

During the national industrial action on Friday and Saturday evening, fire officers stood outside Bolton fire station in Moor Lane waving placards.

Cover was provided by stand-ins with basic training who did not have to deal with any significant incidents.

The row centres on government proposals to raise their retirement age from 55 to 60.

Fire staff would be given fitness tests and the Fire Brigades Union fears they could be made redundant if they fail the tests and pensions could be affected.

FBU general secretary Matt Wrack said: “It’s been almost two months since the government has been willing to meet us. Until they do and start to resolve the dispute, we’ll keep up the pressure for the sake of public safety and our members’ pensions.”

Fire minister Brandon Lewis said: “Firefighters will still get one of the most generous public pension schemes. Less than a quarter will see any change in retirement age and more firefighters pensions are protected than in any other large public service.”

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