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9 Jan 2014

Firefighters working at the oldest station in London were in tears today as they left after their last shift.

Firefighters working at the oldest station in London were in tears today as they left after their last shift.
Crying firefighters
Clerkenwell Fire Station is one of ten closing down in London due to budgets cuts.
A campaign has now started to save the building from being converted into luxury flats.
Local Labour councillor Paul Convery revealed that efforts will be made to have the historic building listed as an asset of community value in a bid to prevent its immediate redevelopment.
Alex Badcock, who has worked at the station for 29 years, broke down as he left the building.
"This is a sad, sad day. Boris Johnson doesn't know what he's doing."
firefighters close
James Cleverly, chairman of the capital's fire authority, said: "Londoners will continue to receive one of the fastest emergency response times in the world from the London Fire Brigade. If you dial 999 and need a fire engine, we still aim to have one with you within six minutes and a second, if needed, within eight.
"The brigade is faced with significant budget cuts which mean that changes to the service are inevitable and we are able to make those changes without compulsory redundancies.
"The firefighters based at the stations closing will now transfer to other stations and continue the excellent work they do to prevent fires, which is vital in changing the behaviours that start fires in the first place."
firefighters closed
Paul Embery, London regional secretary of the Fire Brigades Union, said: "Boris Johnson will have blood on his hands. It will be only a matter of time before someone dies because a fire engine did not get to them in time.
"You cannot close 10 fire stations and slash nearly 600 firefighter jobs without compromising public safety. These stations have protected generations of Londoners, and they are as necessary now as they ever were."
The London brigade said the number of fires in the capital has fallen by 50% in the last decade.
The fire stations closing are at Belsize, Bow, Clerkenwell, Downham, Kingsland, Knightsbridge, Silvertown, Southwark, Westminster and Woolwich.
fire station empty
A legal challenge to the closures, mounted by seven London boroughs last year, failed so the cuts will go ahead, leaving 102 fire stations and 155 engines.

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