Firefighters chose left-wing leader for union

Andy Gilchrist has been toppled as leader of the Fire Brigades Union by a left-wing candidate.

Matt Wrack beat Gilchrist, who had been general secretary of five years, in a union leadership ballot. Wrack polled 12,833 votes with Gilchrist receiving 7,259 in a turn-out of 20,000 firefighters.

Gilchrist led the bitter national strike over pay and restructuring.

Commentators now say the vote could start a new set of rows with the government.

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