PFCC asks Home Office for extra £1.5m to boost Cumbria Fire

Cumbria’s Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner (PFCC), Peter McCall, has written to the Home Office to request an extra £1.5m to assist with the improvement of Cumbria Fire and Rescue Service’s (CFRS) estate.


The £1.5m, if the request is approved by the Home Office, will be used to move towards all 33 non-private financial initiative (PFI) buildings with CFRS are fit for purpose, safe and legal. The extra funding will assist with an assessment of current statutory and best practices around water management, electrical and asbestos.


PFCC Peter McCall said: “Since taking on responsibility for the governance of Cumbria Fire and Rescue Service in April 2023, I have been able to put a medium-term financial plan in place to help us become more financially resilient. However, with no inherited reserves, we need to be prepared.


“Part of my role as PFCC, is to listen to the Chief Fire Officer and leadership team regarding the issues they face and to work together on how we can provide a safer service for public and employees – estates is a common topic that is raised as an area that needs improvement.

“The backlogs and information we inherited following the transfer of governance responsibility surrounding building maintenance was poor and unacceptable. I have a responsibility as the employer to ensure that staff can do their job in a safe environment and any issues are spotted and dealt with quickly.


“The Home Office has already provided us with an additional £3.4m to help adapt CFRS to be an efficient standalone service. However, this extra funding will be solely dedicated to ensuring that our fire stations continue to be fit for purpose and safe for our staff.


“I will continue to fight for funding for Cumbria Fire and Rescue Service to ensure that they can provide a safe and legal service to the public.


“I hope that the Home Office will approve and provide us with this extra funding so that we can continue to build on the excellent work of CFRS.”

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