Young Firefighters petition handed over

Cotswold Journal: Conor Rose holding copies of the petition, with members of the Young Firefighters Association, Shipston Mayor Philip Vial, Warwickshire County Councillor Mike Brain (right) and mums Kate Faulkner and Donna Hall (back). Conor Rose holding copies of the petition, with members of the Young Firefighters Association, Shipston Mayor Philip Vial, Warwickshire County Councillor Mike Brain (right) and mums Kate Faulkner and Donna Hall (back).

PARENTS campaigning to save the Young Firefighters’ Association (YFA) which is under threat from funding cuts have handed in a petition with 2,131 signatures.

A group of supporters including eight members of the YFA officially handed in the petition - which has also gained 244 signatures online - to Warwickshire County Council's Shire Hall headquarters yesterday (Tuesday).

As previously reported, Warwickshire Fire and Rescue Service has just ended its consultation on how it can slash its budget by £2.4million by 2018, with £1.3million of cuts due to be made in the next two years.

But the cuts mean support for the YFA will be stopped in November. The group, which also has branches in Bidford, Kenilworth and Wellesbourne, gives young people the opportunity to get involved in activities in a fire service setting.

Shipston MP Nadhim Zahawi is meeting parents fighting to support the vital service for young people on July 10 so he can learn more about the situation and their concerns.

Parent Donna Hall, of Manor Lane, who launched the petition in support of the Shipston group, said she hoped the county council will take note of the petition.

"I'm not going to quit, it can't finish like that," she said. "Kids enjoy it too much. We've only got four branches now I can't see how it's costing as much as they are saying.

"We have got a possible plan B, we're just waiting for confirmation from the chief fire officer if we can still us the facilities down there."

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