Sam's plaque

Jackie Huxley unveils the plaque dedicated to her late husband Sam with, left to right, Fire Authority member Chris Mellings, Chief Fire Officer Alan Taylor and station manager Sub Officer Phil Smith at Wem fire station.|Right to left, Station Manager Sub Officer Phil Smith with Jackie Huxley, Chief Fire Officer Alan Taylor and Fire Authority member Chris Mellings with the crew at Wem Fire Station at the unveiling ceremony.

A special plaque to "a special man" was unveiled at a ceremony held at Wem Fire Station.

The plaque is dedicated to the late Sam Huxley, a saleseman at Hartshorne's Volvo dealership, who was so helpful in organising a new fire engine for Wem back in 1996.

For the past 11 years the brass plate bearing his name has been sited on the fire appliance travelling to emergencies throughout the area.

When Wem received a replacement engine on Carnival Day this year, the fire crew decided to re-site the plaque inside the fire station.

"The brass plate was put on the engine in appreciation to Sam Huxley for the service he gave to Shropshire Fire and Rescue Service. He was a special man and his wife Jackie was thrilled to bits with it," said Station Manager Phil Smith.

The re-dedication ceremony was held at the fire station on Thursday 1st November.

Much of Shropshire is covered by retained crews working from rural fire stations such as Wem and they are in the process of receiving new equipment, including modern fire engines.

Along with stations at Cleobury, Albrighton, Much Wenlock, Clun, Ellesmere and Prees, Wem Fire Station has now been upgraded to an XL Cab, capable of carrying eight firefighters, as part of an £824,000 cash boost.

The new fire appliance replaces a six seater vehicle and means that Wem frefighters are better equipped to deal with emergencies. More hi-tec equipment can be carried on board to quickly cut free people trapped in the wreckage of their cars after a road crash.

Wem's old fire appliance is now part of the service's reserve fleet.

For more information about helping your rural community by becoming a retained firefighter contact Jan Sorrell on 01743 260 220 or email

6th November, 2007