CALLS are growing for town hall chiefs to rethink plans to cut back CCTV in Blackpool.
Pub bosses in the town have written to the council warning the move will threaten public safety.
As revealed in The Gazette on Saturday, Blackpool Council could slash £187,600 from its budget including CCTV, and five members of staff who monitor the cameras have been notified their jobs are “at risk”.
This weekend the unit was unmanned due to staff sickness but the cameras were still running.
Blackpool Pubwatch has written a letter calling for a rethink.
Pubwatch chairman Craig Southall said: “The licensees in the town think it is absolutely crazy the council is even contemplating this.
“It will go against their own licensing objectives on prevention of crime and disorder, maintaining public safety and prevention of public nuisance.
“Our members agreed to point their external cameras onto the street this weekend so people can still feel safe.”
Dave Daley, landlord of The Castle on Central Drive, added: “CCTV is a cornerstone of security in this town.
“Licensees spend thousands on CCTV inside their premises, so surely the council also has a duty of care to people outside.”
Tory opposition leader on the council Coun Tony Williams said difficult decisions had to be made but security was paramount.
He added: “We have had some serious crime rates recently and CCTV is a very important tool. Every authority has to manage its budget accordingly, but I would prefer if this administration had set CCTV as a priority.”
Blackpool’s deputy leader Coun Fred Jackson said no decision had been made yet, but the council had to make £14m of savings.