Two of East Anglia’s fire services could take a step closer to merging this week.

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The Cambridgeshire and Suffolk brigades have been looking into whether a merger would help protect frontline services from future budget cuts.

On Thursday, members of the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Fire Authority will be asked to approve putting together a full business case for the move.

If they agree, Suffolk County Council’s Cabinet will be asked to make a similar decision on October 16.

The full business case will then go before both of the authorities, before they make a final decision on the proposed merger in the New Year.

Graham Stagg, Cambridgeshire’s chief fire officer, said: “As you can appreciate, there is still a lot of work to be completed on this to understand the financial situation fully and we believe this work should be completed, before a final decision can be made.”

Fred Brown, chairman of the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Fire Authority, said: “We know that further budget cuts after 2015 are very likely.

“Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue Service has already successfully combined its control room with Suffolk’s and so further collaboration of some scale is a natural choice.”

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