ALAN Johnson might be right that the planned changes will risk lives, but he has not given any indication that this would be the case.

Instead of just opposing the changes on the basis that any cuts to budget, and anything apparently instigated by ‘the Tory government’ must be wrong and fought, perhaps a more constructive assessment of the situation would help.

The key question is — can one new fire station, with all modern benefits, properly service our area?

I think that we were told that the maximum impact on response times would be measured in seconds.

If this is true what is the issue as regards our safety?

How many emergency call outs are currently made with how many crews and engines, at what utilisation rate, and how many crews and engines will there be in the proposed single station?

Replacing two older buildings with one new one is a well established and proven way of reducing maintenance costs whilst providing up to date facilities.

This is surely what we also want — and £12.8m is not an inconsiderate sum of money!

Michael Houlston