FIRE chiefs have been given the go-ahead to transform Middlewich's station.

The Civic Way station is set to be among the first to benefit from the Cheshire Fire Authority’s £8.5 million refurbishment programme for 21 fire stations over a five-year period.

Cheshire East Council has granted planning permission for improvement works at the station, after Middlewich Town Council raised no objection to the scheme.

Cheshire Fire Authority hopes to start work on the station in mid-February for completion by September.

The Guardian revealed last April that Middlewich would be among the first stations to be renovated – news that was welcomed by Fiona Bruce, Conservative MP for Congleton.

She said: “I’m full of respect for Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service – I think they have done an excellent job over many years not just with tackling fire, but with helping to prevent fires.

“I am delighted that they are investing in these upgrades and I know they will be done to a high level like the Alsager station [which opened in 2016].”

Winsford fire station is expected to be upgraded in 2023 as part of the scheme.

Cheshire Fire Authority approved the programme at the September 2018 meeting.

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A report presented at that meeting said that of the 21 stations to be renovated, 11 were built in the 1960s, six are from the 1970s, one was built in the 1980s and three are from the 1990s.