PEOPLE in Bromyard have argued they do not feel the ambulance service is providing adequate cover for the town.

More than 12 months ago the rest-over facility for paramedics at Bromyard Community Hospital was closed, meaning there was no base left for crews in north-east Herefordshire.

Since then, the town has also lost its community first responder (CFR). Used across the country, CFRs are volunteers who respond to emergency 999 calls within their local community, providing healthcare until an emergency ambulance arrives.

Bromyard West councillor Alan Seldon has led calls for a new CFR to save the town being “starved” of resources.

“The CFR situation in Bromyard has been going on for some time,” said It’s Our County group leader Coun Seldon.

“It seems to me that West Midlands Ambulance Service is slowly withdrawing from north-east Herefordshire and leaving it for some unknown reason.

He added: “There’s a chap in Bromyard who volunteered before, offered to go back and he hasn’t heard anything.”

West Midlands Ambulance Service said it will start recruiting again for CFRs over the winter.

“CFR recruitment has been suspended across the entire West Midlands region whilst a nationally agreed training programme is put in place,” a spokesman said.

“The new training programme will ensure all CFRs are trained to the same regulated national qualification, ensuring continuity across the service and will provide enhanced clinical governance arrangements, which will protect our patients.

“The course is almost at the point of being ready to implement, therefore it is anticipated that recruitment of CFRs will be able to commence again throughout the winter, ahead of training beginning in February 2021.”