Firefighters have reacted with ‘fury’ at proposed changes to fire and rescue services in Devon and Somerset.

Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service has outlined six proposals to address a reduction in activity in some areas and a shrinking budget. All of them include the closure of at least eight stations, including Appledore and Woolacombe in North Devon.

Other proposals include Barnstaple station losing 'whole time' cover at night, Lynton losing one of its appliances and Ilfracombe no longer crewing a second appliance during the day.

The Fire Brigades Union's (FBU) Trevor French, said the proposals were scandalous.

He said: "These proposals should be rejected by the fire authority. They are dangerous and will put lives at risk, there is no doubt about that.

"We had significant cuts in North Devon in 2013 when day cover was removed at Ilfracombe and we were given assurances then. It seems scandalous that the fire service is looking to remove cover during the day.

"To remove any whole time immediate response for the whole of North Devon is absolutely outrageous and extremely dangerous for residents.

"We totally reject any station closures and cuts to front line services. We are absolutely shocked and horrified that they looking to put these proposals out when finances are in place. We also believe the local community of North Devon will reject the proposals if they go out for consultation.

"If any of these cuts are agreed we will be looking at forms of industrial action."

FBU secretary for Devon and Somerset, James Leslie, said the plans would 'undeniably compromise public safety'.

He said: "Devon and Somerset firefighters are furious with these proposals.

"Despite promises from senior management to protect frontline services, full-time fire cover and jobs have been slashed since the combination in 2007 which created DSFRS. Now the service appears to have given up on vital retained fire cover.

"We demand that the fire authority rejects these proposals. The FBU will not tolerate these dangerous plans and we plan to mobilise against them."

The proposals will be considered by Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Authority next week. An emergency meeting of Devon and Somerset FBU is planned for Friday, June 28.