Ambulance service in meltdown

Crisis talks were held 25 years ago this week in a bid to ease Harborough’s ambulance dispute, a day after the area was plunged into chaos when crews vetoed all but 999 emergency calls.

The town’s ambulance workers were unhappy at being the county’s lowest-paid after seeing wages slashed by 70 per cent.

Ambulance crews stepped up industrial action on Monday, December 4, 1989, by only responding to 999 calls but 24 hours later ambulance bosses got a reprieve when workers agreed to call off the protest until a unions’ meeting scheduled for December 7.

“Some felt we had jumped the gun by just taking 999 calls but basic grade staff are still not happy about losing their money,” Harborough’s then ambulance station officer Len Cope told the M ail.