FBU labels Hertfordshire County Council’s comments over Stevenage Bikefest cancellation as ‘misleading and disingenuous’

The FBU has responded to comments from Hertfordshire County Council concerning the cancellation of B

The FBU has responded to comments from Hertfordshire County Council concerning the cancellation of Bikefest 2014 - Credit: Archant

The Fire Brigades Union has labelled comments from Hertfordshire County Council related to the cancellation of a motorcycle festival as “misleading and disingenuous”.

The county council announced last week that Bikefest 2014 will not be going ahead at Longfield Fire and Rescue Training Centre in Hitchin Road, Stevenage, on Sunday.

Councillor Richard Thake, responsible for community safety, said the decision had been made due to a series of firefighting strikes taking place midday to 2pm and 10.59pm to 11.59pm every day through to Saturday.

The walkouts have been organised by the FBU as a dispute with the government over pensions continues.

Daren Scotchford, FBU secretary for Hertfordshire, said: “We just cannot see the justification for cancelling an event that is in no way affected by the strikes which come to an end the night before. To imply that because local firefighters are taking part in strike action they are in some way responsible for the decision is misleading and disingenuous.


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“In their press release Hertfordshire County Council states that industrial action is to blame and they are ‘unlikely to be able to dedicate the resources needed’. This is just not true. I have spoken to some of the organisers today and they are angered and extremely upset by the comments – they are very much ready and keen to run the event. This is a huge waste of the money that has already been spent to stage Bikefest, money that is now lost to the taxpayer – not to mention the inconvenience to all involved and the disappointment of those who were attending.

“Playing politics with this event and attempting to paint firefighters in a bad light is outrageous. There appears to be an increasing trend in this type of sharp practice from some senior managers and politicians. A number of these individuals, some of whom are on six figure salaries, seem to think it is a game; they need to realise that it isn’t.”

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