UPDATE: Sudbury to lose second fire engine

Sudbury's protest against the possible cuts to the fire service in the town and the possible loss of the town's second fire engine. the campaign is being backed by the SFP. ANL-151027-135656009

Sudbury's protest against the possible cuts to the fire service in the town and the possible loss of the town's second fire engine. the campaign is being backed by the SFP. ANL-151027-135656009

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Sudbury will lose its second fire engine under proposals from Suffolk County Council.

If the proposals are agreed by the council’s cabinet at a meeting on November 10, then Sudbury would see its second engine removed and be replaced with a rapid response vehicle.

There have been campaigns in the town to save the second engine, which the Free press has backed.

The loss of the fire engine comes as Suffolk County Council looks to save £1.3million from the county’s fire services.

The replacement rapid response vehicle is likely to enter service in 2018, with the current fire engine remaining until that time.

Mark Hardingham, chief fire officer for Suffolk Fire and Rescue Service, confirmed there would be less on-call crew members required, but said the exact figure would not be known until a decision on the type of replacement vehicle had been made.

The rapid response vehicles require two to three firefighters, rather than the four to six crew members needed to man the current fire engine.

Bury St Edmunds and Ipswich are other towns in the county which will lose appliances.

Services will not be cut in nearby stations in Long Melford, Clare or Nayland.

The cuts to the service are to be discussed by Sudbury Town Council next week.

Mr Hardingham will be joined by Matthew Hicks, Suffolk County Council cabinet member for environment and public protection, at the town council meeting on November 10, to discuss the proposed cuts.

Members of the public are welcome, with requests from serving firefighters for residents to make their feelings known at the meeting which takes place at 7pm in the town hall.

Following the cabinet decision on November 10, there will be a 14-week public consultation period.

See Thursday’s Free Press for the full story.