Just days after FIRE brought you news of South Yorkshire Fire & Rescue Service investing in the new Lifewise Centre, the service has revealed plans to close three of its Sheffield fire stations.

The decision has been branded "preposterous" by the Fire Bridgades Union but an SYFRS spokesman said they had to make "drastic changes" to cope with £10m budget cuts.

The three stations set to shut are Darnall, Mansfield Road and Mosborough, with suggestions they will replaced by a larger combined depot near Sheffield Parkway.

Part-time crews at Edlington and Royston fire stations are also likely to be cut in plans that are to be submitted to the Fire Authority at the end of October.

Assistant chief fire officer, Mark Shaw, believes that these changes represent a best-case scenario in an era of reduced budgets.

However, John Gilliver South Yorkshire FBU's secretary, said: "It will have a devastating effect on the public.

"We've got an increased population in South Yorkshire, an increased industrial premises, the risk has increased and yet they're trying to decrease this brigade and the facility we provide."

Posted on October 11 2011 at 1730 by Richard. Comment by emailing: richard.hook@pavpub.com