It’s a job that’s challenging, exciting and means you get to help the local community. That is the job description for a firefighter with Shropshire Fire and Rescue Service which is looking for new recruits in Wellington.
“Being a firefighter is not like any other job. It can be unpredictable, exciting and very rewarding coupled with the satisfaction and the respect that comes with providing a crucial service to the community,” says Tony Talbot, Watch Manager at Wellington Fire Station.
More than 200 leaflets are being distributed around the market town coupled with a social media campaign to encourage more men and women to become “on call” firefighters.
Recruits must be able to reach the Wellington station from home or work within five minutes, have enthusiasm to work in a team environment and be willing to support and serve their community.
Firefighters come from all walks of life and their ages range from 18 to 60. There are 14 based in Wellington but the station needs a few more new recruits to replace those who have left.
They will join more than 300 on call firefighters from 22 county fire stations who respond to 999 calls at a moment’s notice.
At the recent passing out ceremony for new recruits, Chief Fire Officer Rod Hammerton praised “on call” firefighters who were called on “at the dead of night” to help people “in peril.”
“It will be someone from your community and you are the only people who will be able to help them.”
Firefighters are trained to deal with all 999 emergencies including road collisions, fires, floods, animal rescues, and any incident they are called upon.
“They constantly practice their skills to be part of a team which they can trust and who trusts them. People who become firefighters believe in honour and duty and true public service,” added the Chief Fire Officer.
Recent new recruits at Wellington who “passed out” included a survival instructor, mechanic, commercial services advisor and an accounts analyst.
Customer Services Advisor Chris Smith and Master Technician Glen Wheatley are usually the first to arrive at Wellington Fire Station to get the fire engine ready when a 999 call comes in.
Both Furrows employees, they immediately stop work when their emergency bleepers go off and run the 200 metres across the road to the fire station.
Glen, who has been a firefighter for two years, said: "I thoroughly enjoy every minute of it."
While Chris said: "It's exciting and a real challenge. It means you give something back to your community."
Anyone interested should contact Tony Talbot on 07816293413 or fire HQ on 01743 260200. An ”on call” firefighter information pack and application form is available at www.shropshirefire.gov.uk
You can follow the fire service on Facebook and twitter.