Ms Florence Reece

“Which side are you on?” three versions and more

There are various versions of the song. If you are of my generation you may well know Billy Bragg’s track which first appeared on the EP Between the wars. (Vinyl EPs – those were the days!) The song is a development of an older one written by a woman called Florence Reece who grew up in a coal...

Helmet visor

Picket lines songs and Union songs

Struggle – and songs The end of year is normally a time for all sorts of fun; for light hearted quizzes and competition. This year for FBU members and their families there is a very bleak side. We are still in the middle of a bitter fight to try to defend our pension rights and protect conditions...

Fire Engines

FBU Black Ribbon badge: Honour our dead – fight for the living

On Tuesday this coming week, many of us will attend the funeral of Brother Stephen Hunt in Bury. I will be wearing my FBU black ribbon badge in honour of Stephen and in memory of our other colleagues who have died in the line of duty. We introduced the ribbon badge a few years ago after we became...

Firefighters resting

No threat of capability? Who are they trying to kid?

The FBU is currently balloting members over pensions. We expect a bit of a war of words at such a time. The governments(s) have started responding. So have various Chief Officers and other principal managers. One theme of these responses is that the FBU is overstating the case on capability. There...

FBU member portrait

Firefighters needs the facts on pensions

As you might expect on a subject such as pensions, there are a lot of facts and figures being fired around. But one emerged this week that was particularly telling. After a phone-in on pensions with Fire Minister Brandon Lewis, a poll of its 130 listeners indicated 72% had been given no better...

FBU anti cuts adverts spark debate

The FBU launched a series of adverts in the press last Monday in the run up to our lobby of Parliament on Wednesday. It caused quite a stir. The (English) Department for Communities and Local Government (CLG) isssued a press comment cricising us and a number of MPs raised objections. It even...

FBU lobby against the cuts

This Wednesday will see FBU members from around the UK attend a lobby of Parliament in Westminster to argue against cuts in the fire service. This is a targeted lobby of delegates from each brigade committee – but all FBU members are asked to follow this up by contacting your local MP. This can be...

West Yorkshire rally against the proposed cuts

Having bought myself an i-pad, I am hoping to be able to update the blog a bit quicker than in the past. I have not yet quite mastered putting pics in the blog from the i-pad so there may be some delays in that. But because its easier to carry I can draft posts much quicker. Am writing this on the...

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