Cambridgeshire police and crime commissioner to oversee fire service

Police and crime commissioner Jason Ablewhite who has won Home Office approval to take over Cambridg

Police and crime commissioner Jason Ablewhite who has won Home Office approval to take over Cambridgeshire Fire Authority. - Credit: Archant

The police and crime commissioner for Cambridgeshire is set to take on responsbility for the county’s fire service, after the move was approved by the Home Office today.

Jason Ablewhite, who has been the PCC since 2016, will now become the police, fire and crime commissioner, and will take control of the fire and rescue service from the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Fire Authority.

Mr Ablewhite said: “Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue Service do a vital job saving lives both through their prevention work, tackling fires and through their many other important roles. The changes announced today will focus on how the fire service is governed and I look forward to working with the fire authority to ensure a smooth transition of responsibilities.”

The decision made today follows a year long process that involved the production of a business case which underwent a thorough consultation last summer.

The business case was formally submitted to the Home Office in October 2017. It was then independently assessed by The Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy in December 2017.

Minister for policing and the fire service, Nick Hurd said: “It’s great to see police and crime commissioners identifying opportunities to drive greater collaboration between police and fire – there is a real opportunity to improve the services provided to local people.

“The proposals will encourage joint working, sharing of best practice and innovative thinking.

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“Having a directly accountable leader overseeing both policing and fire will also help maximise available resources and drive transformation across both services. I look forward to seeing the benefits this will bring to the local areas.”

The exact date for transfer of responsibilities is yet to be agreed.