Cambs fire control room step closer to merger with Buckinghamshire

CALL handlers for Cambridgeshire Fire Service could soon be directing fire engines in Buckinghamshire.

The Buckinghamshire and Milton Keynes Fire Authority has made a formal approach to share the combined control room in Hinchingbrooke with Cambridgeshire and Suffolk after dismissing a Thames Valley-based partnership, outsourcing to London and retaining its existing control room.

A spokesman for Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue Service said: “It’s unknown how much we are likely to save but it won’t be as significant at the �800,000 saved when we merged services with Suffolk last October.”

Councillor David Rowlands, chairman of Buckinghamshire & Milton Keynes Fire Authority, said: “The report shows that this move could generate savings of �600,000 a year without compromising the safety of the public or our firefighters.

“The decision brings us a step closer to starting to make the arrangements, and commit resources, pending formal confirmation from the other fire authorities.”

Members of the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Fire Authority will discuss the possible merger when they next meet on May 24.