Page last updated at 07:48 GMT, Friday, 30 April 2010 08:48 UK

Essex firefighters suspend industrial action

Members of the Fire Brigades Union (FBU) in Essex have suspended industrial action for three weeks in order to try and resolve their dispute.

The row between the union and Essex Fire and Rescue Service over jobs and working practices has been going on since last August.

At a meeting on Thursday night the union agreed to recommend suspension of industrial action for 21 days.

The union will meet again on 13 May to review the progress of negotiations.

Keith Flynn, secretary of the FBU in Essex said: "It's now in the hands of both sides' negotiators to seize this window of opportunity to iron out the final details for a potential settlement."

The FBU has accused managers of planning to impose frontline job cuts starting at Colchester, Leigh, Chelmsford and Harlow.

The fire authority has said the proposed changes would make the service more flexible.

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