DORSET & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Authority has agreed to increase its share of the council tax by less than three pence a week.

This means the average Band D household will pay a fire service precept of £1.49 extra a year when the new council tax comes into force in April.

Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service's (DWFRS) annual precept for the coming financial year will be £76.36.

The fire authority's budget for 2020/21 has been agreed as £57.064 million.

Chief Fire Officer Ben Ansell said: “Elected members and officers have continued to lobby for the freedoms and flexibilities to increase the fire precept for Band D properties by a modest £5 per year or just 10p per week.

"The fire authority were only given the opportunity to increase by 1.99 per cent or £1.49 on last year.

"However, this year we have also seen a small 1.6 per cent inflation related increase in our grant funding, receiving an extra £229,000 on 2019-20.

"Whilst this is welcome, at this stage it is for one year only."

Mr Ansell added that across Dorset and Wiltshire the fire service is committed to recruiting more on-call firefighters, describing them as "vital to our predominantly rural service."

He also underlined the importance of continuing with fire prevention and education – whether working in schools or delivering safe and well visits to people in their homes.

DWFRS will also respond to and implement recommendations of the Grenfell Tower Public Inquiry.

Meanwhile, Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Authority chairman Cllr Rebecca Knox said: “Our fire and rescue service delivers so much to our local communities. People are very aware of the 24/7 emergency response, but there is also a wealth of education, prevention and protection work being carried out every single day to help people to stay safe.

"The decisions made by members continue our commitment to maintaining this excellent service to local people.”