FIREFIGHTERS took their fight against cuts ­— which could see Bolton lose a fire station ­— to Parliament this week.

A 30-strong crew marched on Westminster as part of a campaign, which has already seen 12,000 people sign a petition against the proposals which would replace two stations in Bolton with just one and cut fire engines sparking widespread concern.

Across Greater Manchester the number of firefighters riding on appliances reduce from five to four.

Six stations would be merged into three, with the number of engines in operation across the conurbation reducing from 56 to 47.

Bolton MP David Crausby has also voiced his opposition to cuts to the local fire service.

The proposals have been put forward by Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham as part controversial plans to cut the Greater Manchester Fire Service to save £12.8 million.

Gary Keary, Fire Brigades Union Greater Manchester secretary, said: “Firefighters have warned from the start that these cuts will lead to slower response times and more preventable deaths and injuries. It’s great to have Labour MPs from Greater Manchester and beyond supporting our campaign.

“They can see how dangerous these proposals are, so why can’t our Labour Mayor, Andy Burnham?

“We hope the Mayor’s office is now beginning to recognise that we are the professional voice of firefighters.

“Five firefighters is the minimum safe number of firefighters required on a fire engine, and we want a cast iron guarantee that this safe level of crewing will be maintained.

“ In a service with fewer firefighters, fewer fire engines, and fewer non-uniformed staff, the public will be left exposed, regardless of any possible deferrals.”

More than a dozen MPs from Greater Manchester and beyond attended including Rebecca Long-Bailey, the Shadow Business Secretary; Karen Lee, the Shadow Fire Minister; Lucy Powell; Jeff Smith; Jonathan Reynolds; Liz McInnes; Andrew Gwynne; Mike Kane; Barbara Keeley; Jim McMahon; Kate Green; Tony Lloyd; Afzal Khan; Graham Stringer and a representative from Jeremy Corbyn’s office.

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