Ilford firefighters turned away from City Hall meeting about controversial fire cuts

Ilford firefighters were refused entry into City Hall last week as Boris Johnson spoke about controversial plans to close fire stations across London and cut jobs.

Fire Brigades Union (FBU) members gathered at Mayor’s Question Time on Wednesday to challenge the mayor over the axeing of 10 fire stations, 14 engines and more than 500 jobs.

No Redbridge stations will be closed but London Fire Brigade figures predict that fire engines will arrive slower than target times in most parts of the borough if the changes go ahead.

FBU member Ian Leahair said five firefighters from Ilford Fire Station, in High Road, were turned away from the meeting, where they were supporting colleagues.

A spokesman for the Mayor of London said the chamber was full and letting more people in would have been a “fire and safety hazard”.

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The FBU, politicians and campaign groups have objected to the proposals, which would save the brigade an estimated £28.8million.

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