In a final attempt to save Penrith’s second fire engine, hundreds of local residents marched through Penrith’s town centre, led by retained fire fighter Dawn Coates, and Rory. Cumbria County Council have proposed the measure in an effort to save £50,000 from their budget, but Penrith firefighters and the local community have raised strong concerns that without a second appliance, the service will be unable to meet its statutory response times to emergencies, putting lives and property at unnecessary risk.
Local campaigners marched from Middlegate to the Corn Market bandstand, where volunteers were standing by to gather further signatures for their petition – already signed by thousands – and to inform local residents how to contact those councillors responsible for deciding the future of Cumbria’s Fire and Rescue Services.
Speaking at the bandstand, Rory said:
“What is most frustrating is that Penrith firefighters have already suggested sensible, alternative proposals for how to save this money. This is not the right cut, and there are real concerns about the safety implications of removing this engine. It is clear from the turnout today, and the thousands of names on the petition, that this service is deeply valued by Penrith and the local community. Please everyone get in touch with your local councillors and let them know just how much you disagree with proposition 28. “