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Second consultation drop-in event to be held at Pangbourne Fire Station

Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service (RBFRS) has announced a second day of drop-in sessions in Pangbourne, in which local people can come and meet fire service representatives to hear about the ongoing public consultation.

The event will take place on Saturday, 18 February 2017, between 10am-5pm at Pangbourne Fire Station, Horseshoe Road, and will provide an opportunity to find out more about the consultation, the options identified and what they could mean for the local community.

Budget cuts from Central Government mean as an organisation, RBFRS has to make savings of £2.4 million by April 2020. The Response proposals contain a set of options, each of which would create required savings in the region of £1.4 million, as outlined in this consultation document.

Among the response options for consideration is the potential closure of Pangbourne Fire Station and merger with a new fire station at Theale.

The consultation is running for a period of 13 weeks, from 12 December – 13 March 2017. During this period, RBFRS wants to hear the views of staff and the people who live; work and travel in Royal Berkshire, so is organising events like this one to ensure the best possible choices are made to equip the service for the future, in an environment of shrinking financial resources.

RBFRS’s three key objectives are to balance the Fire Authority’s budget, maximise its contribution to enabling people across Royal Berkshire to lead safe and fulfilling lives and do all it can to align any changes made to meet the aspirations of staff.

A technical report has been produced which analysed each scenario in terms of the level of risk they would pose to the communities of Royal Berkshire; including the impact they would have on our ability to meet our response standard. Our current response standard states that we will attend all emergency incidents within 10 minutes on 75% of occasions. To understand how we model risk, you can view this report on our website.

To take part, we encourage you to read this document first before providing your feedback in one of the following ways:

If you would like a hard copy of the consultation document, or require assistance with accessing the information in an alternative format or language, please contact us using any of the methods above.

Jim Powell, Temporary Area Manager, who manages RBFRS’ consultation process, said: “We held an event in January at the station and our team enjoyed meeting local people to talk about the ongoing consultation. This second event on a weekend date should hopefully give more people an opportunity to come and talk to us about the options outlined.”

Councillor Emma Webster, Royal Berkshire Fire Authority’s Integrated Risk Management Plan Lead Member, said: “We are encouraging as many people as possible to have their say as part of this consultation. No decisions have yet been taken so your feedback is really important to us and will help shape the future of your fire and rescue service. If you have a chance, please visit the fire station on 18 February to find out more”.

After the consultation closes the Fire Authority will carefully consider all feedback received, before making any decisions on changes to the service. Final decisions will be published in a report available on the RBFRS website in May 2017.