I WRITE, as I am sure many others will, about the recent planning approval for the Saughall Massie fire station.

The decision hinged primarily on response times as the basis for the "very special circumstances" needed by law before approving planning applications on our Green Belt.

It was stated that the repositioning of the fire station would reduce response times on average for West Kirby by two minutes, but would extend response times to Upton by one minute but that 75% of call outs are in the Upton area.

There was a great deal of debate encompassing cows on narrow lanes, relative proximity to Arrowe Park Hospital, the M53 and Brackendale tower.

Indeed the size of the elderly population in various wards was also quoted.

All of this debate may have been appropriate if considering the location of a new fire station in the absence of the existing Upton fire station.

However, Upton fire station is built and to consider closing it and building a new one on Green belt at some expense one mile away on the basis of debatable response times is not sensible.

Critically, the issue of response times was clearly debatable and was in no way clear cut and as such cannot constitute the "very special circumstances" required to grant permission to build.

Overall it was a shamefully poor meeting.

Dr Tim Watson, Upton