§ Dr. Whitehead
There are a number of different categories of fire authorities in England and Wales. Broadly speaking, these divide into 34 single-purpose authorities and 16 county fire authorities, where the fire service is provided by the county council as one of a range of services. Single-purpose fire authorities are best value authorities in their own right. For county fire authorities the duty of best value applies at county council level. No overall assessment is available of the costs incurred by fire authorities on the best value process. It would not be feasible to apportion costs incurred by county councils in respect of best value for the fire service.