Notts Fire and Rescue Service ends recruitment freeze as retirements increase

Aneta Suszczyk and James Armstrong-Clausen

Nottinghamshire Fire and Rescue Service lifted a five-year recruitment freeze on full-time firefighters because of an increasing number of retirements.

The service has launched its ‘Yes You Can’ campaign as it bids to take on more on-call firefighters, also known as retained firefighters.

Retained staff work on a part-time basis and commit a certain number of hours a week to being on-call, and will respond to emergencies from home or work.

They are given the same training as full-time firefighters and will attend the same incidents, such as fire, crashes, chemical incidents and of course, animal rescues.

Nottinghamshire uses a mixture of full-time firefighters and ‘retained’ or part-time firefighters who work on-call.

One of the newest on-call firefighters in the county is Aneta Suszczyk, who is based at Southwell Fire Station. She said joining was one of the best decisions she has made.

“I’ve become a stronger and better person, I’ve made my parents proud and I’ve met a lot of magnificent people from trainees to Station Managers – all of whom help motivate you to be the best you can be,” she said.

“You’re never alone at Nottinghamshire Fire and Rescue Service, as there’s always someone by your side.”

Harworth-based retained firefighter Lamour White said his favourite thing about the job is being a part of the community.

“I feel it’s really important to interact with people in the local community, whether it be giving them fire safety advice or just letting them know that we’re always there for them,” he added.

The service’s Chief Fire Officer, John Buckley, started his career as an on-call firefighter more than 20 years ago.

He said: “Our retained firefighters are massively important and provide an essential service to us, and the people in their local communities, as they provide most of the fire cover in Nottinghamshire, particularly in the smaller towns and rural areas.

“I know from experience that whilst being a retained member of staff is challenging, it’s also extremely rewarding, and I’d urge anybody interested to have a look on website and put in an application. You may already have the skills to be a fantastic firefighter, you just don’t know it yet.”

Applications are being accepted at Misterton, Worksop, Retford, Tuxford, Warsop, Collingham, Southwell, Blidworth, Eastwood, Stapleford, Bingham, Ashfield and East Leake.

The application window opens on Monday 17th July and runs for three weeks – interested applicants are urged to visit www.notts-fire.gov.uk for more information and to apply.