On-call firefighters needed in Coniston, Grange, Kirkby Lonsdale, Milnthorpe, Shap and Staveley

The Westmorland Gazette: Cumbria Fire and Rescue Service Cumbria Fire and Rescue Service

CUMBRIA Fire and Rescue Service is launching a recruitment drive for 25 on-call firefighters.

They are needed at 16 fire stations across the county including Appleby, Broughton, Coniston, Grange, Kirkby Lonsdale, Kirkby Stephen, Milnthorpe, Shap and Staveley.

Earlier in the year a recruitment campaign to find on-call firefighters at 25 stations proved successful, with about 30 new recruits due to start training.

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If successful, the new on-call firefighters will be expected to attend a two-hour training session at their fire station each week plus additional training courses.

The nature of the on-call duty system also requires firefighters to live or work within five minutes of their station.

On-call firefighters are contracted to provide an agreed number of ‘availability’ hours and only attend the fire station when they have received an emergency callout.

On most stations weekday ‘day cover’ between 8am – 6pm in addition to weekend cover is required.

Call rates vary from fire station to fire station, with some of Cumbria’s on-call stations responding to over 200 calls a year and others as few as 15.

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The service is looking for men and women from all different backgrounds who are fit, healthy, up for a challenge and prepared to commit to the role.

One recently retired on-call firefighter who clocked up an astonishing 45 years’ service at Appleby fire station is calling on people to get involved.

Brian Jones said: “My aim was to serve the local community and as my dad was a firefighter at Appleby I joined as well.

“It’s a very rewarding role. At Appleby we deal with a lot of accidents on the A66 and I’ll never forget how rewarding it always was to get somebody trapped in their vehicle out and know what a difference you were making to them and their families.

“I’d encourage people who think they might be interested in becoming on-call firefighters to just go for it and apply. Providing that service to the local community is what it’s all about and it’s why I did it for so long.”

Messages and information about the recruitment campaign will be highlighted via the @CFRSRecruitment Twitter account and Cumbria Fire and Rescue Service’s Facebook page.

The on-call firefighter posts are not volunteer roles.

The pay scales for an on-call firefighter are:

  • A retainer of £2,158 - £2,877 dependent on the cover provided
  • An hourly rate of £13.14 when competent in your role
  • An on-call firefighter can earn around £6,000 a year

To apply people will need to complete an application form; carry out a number of nationally recognised tests and have an interview and medical check.

A series of open days are being held so people interested in becoming on-call firefighters can visit their local station to chat to the crews, have a go at some of the tests and find out more about what this lifesaving role entails.

Open days are taking place at the following fire stations on the following dates:

  • Appleby - 11am-2pm Saturday 16 August and 4pm-7pm Wednesday 27 August
  • Aspatria - 3pm-5pm Monday 18 August
  • Bootle – 2pm-6pm Thursday 31 July and 2pm-5pm Sunday 31 August
  • Broughton – 10am-2pm Thursday 31 July and 10am-1pm Saturday 30 August
  • Coniston – 10am-1pm Saturday 2 August and 4pm-7pm Monday 18 August
  • Egremont – 11am-1pm Friday 25 July
  • Grange – 10am-1pm Saturday 26 July and 10am-1pm Monday 4 August
  • Kirkby Lonsdale – 4pm-7pm Tuesday 5 August and 10am-1pm Saturday 23 August
  • Kirkby Stephen – 11am-2pm Saturday 26 July and 4pm-7pm Tuesday 19 August
  • Maryport – 2pm-5pm Tuesday 19 August
  • Milnthorpe – 3.30pm-7.30pm Wednesday 30 July and 10am-1pm Sunday 10 August
  • Seascale – 11am-1pm Monday 28 July
  • Shap – 11am-2pm Sunday 27 July and 4pm-7pm Monday 18 August
  • Silloth – 2pm-5pm Thursday 24 July
  • Staveley – 4pm-7pm Wednesday 13 August and 11am to 2pm Saturday 30 August
  • Walney – 2pm-6pm Friday 1 August and 10am-1pm Sunday 31 August

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