Fears over fire station plans
FOLLOWING a recent fire at the Birds Eye factory in Whapload Road, Lowestoft, I must voice my concerns over the fire station proposal.Over the years the people of south Lowestoft have claimed the Clifton Road fire station didn't fully cover their needs.
FOLLOWING a recent fire at the Birds Eye factory in Whapload Road, Lowestoft, I must voice my concerns over the fire station proposal.
Over the years the people of south Lowestoft have claimed the Clifton Road fire station didn't fully cover their needs. Now we have the reverse situation - the south end being fully covered and the north inadequately covered.
I have been told the new fire station was financed by a private finance initiative.
If this is correct then this to me is bad practice - selling an existing fire station to raise cash and lumbering ratepayer with rent payments on the new fire station for years to come. If, in the future, heaven forbid, a major fire or accident in north Lowestoft with loss of life were to occur, I am sure questions will be asked.
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A businessman who has any sort of brain would not undertake this sort of deal as it would eat into his profit margin for years to come but a local council's way out is to sting the ratepayer a bit more.
Is the money raised for Normanston fire station to help pay off council debts? Or is it to help pay for the new Waveney Campus? Or perhaps the Campus will be a PFI deal as well, lumbering us with more expense. There are plenty of rejected sites to build 30 houses on and retain Normanston fire station.
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Lowestoft is a town split in two. The ideal solution is to retain both fire stations with elements of the ambulance and police emergency services stationed at both. I hear there is a delay in opening the new fire station due to IT problems.
Remember, we have our share of bridge problems and incidents always seem to happen at the most inconvenient times.
I can visualise the north Lowestoft single tender out on a job when something major happens - back up would then have to come from the far end of town.
The worst thing that should be allowed to happen is not pull Normanston fire station but to mothball it.
D B HOWES