Fears over coastguard station closure

Paul Little

Paul Little

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The station officer of a Lancashire coastguard centre has admitted the service faces an uncertain future as a key regional station prepares to close.

Liverpool Coastguard Station is set to close on January 16, with Holyhead Station in Wales handling emergency calls for Morecambe Bay and the Fylde Coast.

Closure of the Crosby station will result in the loss of around a dozen jobs, after the Government announced it would streamline the service.

But Lytham coastguard station officer Paul Little warned the move could prove problematic for rescue services.

He said: “My worry is the lack of local knowledge. There will be more onus put on ourselves. From that side of things there is not a great deal we can do. There should be no change for the general public.

“I think we may get more calls though. It concerns me as we have a rapport with people around there (Liverpool).

“We show them round the coast, show hotspots and give a mental picture. I do not believe the new people will be allowed to do that.”

The Government announced in 2011 the Crosby-based centre was one of nine stations around the UK which would close.

The Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) said a national network would be complete by the end of 2015 to enable the operations centre and the 10 remaining coastguard stations to work together.

Liverpool Coastguard covers waters from the Point of Ayr on the Dee Estuary to the Mull of Galloway.