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Awaiting Our Fate.....

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Well, some time before the Parliamentary recess on 19th July, we will find out if our campaign to save the Coastguard Station in Shetland has been successful. The first step towards that is the release of the report by the House of Commons Transport Select Committee at 00.01 on Thursday 23rd June. Having given formal evidence before the Committee I will receive my embargoed copy at 09.30 on Weds 22nd. I'm hoping this report will be highly critical of the proposals as I believe this may well impact on the new proposals the Government are to present before the summer recess. It has been made very clear recently by both the Shipping Minister Mike Penning and the Transport Secretary Philip Hammond, that what was originally proposed by the MCA is not what they will take forward (much to the chagrin of certain individuals at HQ whose personal agendas and egos are the main driving force behind these changes despite any stated aim to the contrary either about "modernisation" or indeed, saving money).

The more critical the TSC is, I believe, the more the Govt may change the proposals and the more stations will survive. We know that some stations slated for closure are now going to survive, we just don't know which ones yet, so we still have a few more weeks to wait. But then whats a few more weeks on top of the enormously hard slog we have endured since the proposals were first announced on December 16th last year. I am enormously proud of the campaign we have fought to retain our vital, life-saving station. Throughout it all, I and my colleagues have acted with the utmost professionalism, continuing to do our job to the very best of our abilities whilst all the while having to worry about our jobs and our futures. For me personally, to have represented by colleagues in such a campaign has been a highlight of my life, particularly having the honour to represent them before a Parliamentary Committee, something I never expected to have to do and I am humbled that they put their faith and trust in me. I can only hope that we have done enough.
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