London,
20
December
2013
|
14:15
Europe/London

Fire stations will close following High Court ruling

Kingsland+Road+Fire+Station+by+kenjonbro+on+Flickr+%28CC+BY-NC-SA+2.0%29++

Ten fire stations across London will close after the High Court rejected legal arguments from seven councils that cuts to the capital's fire service were flawed and should not go ahead.

Camden, Greenwich, Hackney, Islington, Lewisham, Southwark and Tower Hamlets councils sought judicial review of cuts that will also lead to the loss of 14 fire appliances and 552 firefighter posts.

Today (Friday 20 December), however, the High Court has found that the Fifth London Safety Plan is lawful and can go ahead.

Cllr Sophie Linden, Deputy Mayor, Hackney Council
I'm very disappointed with this result. But I am more disappointed that the Mayor of London chose to ignore the very real concerns of residents to force through these plans which put lives at risk.

As a result of these damaging cuts, a third of Hackney will now fall outside London Fire Brigade's recommended response time and residents in De Beauvoir ward will have to wait more than three minutes longer for vital, life-saving assistance.
Cllr Sophie Linden, Deputy Mayor, Hackney Council

The 10 stations facing closure are Belsize in Camden, Bow in Tower Hamlets, Clerkenwell in Islington, Downham in Lewisham, Kingsland in Hackney, Knightsbridge in Kensington and Chelsea, Silvertown in Newham, Southwark, Westminster, and Woolwich in Greenwich.

The councils had argued in court that the plan does not take into account fire risk factors in inner London, which is previously more densely populated, has more deprived and disadvantaged residents who are at greater risk from fire, has a large number of high-rise buildings, and where fire responses are often more complex.