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On call firefighters meet families from Stowmarket and Needham Market at new joint fire and police station in Needham Road, Stowmarket





Families from Stowmarket and Needham Market learnt about the important role of on call firefighters at an open day and received a glimpse of a new station.

On Saturday, Stowmarket fire station opened its doors, with running ladder and rescue demonstrations for potential new recruits.

Martyn Hazelwood, Suffolk Fire and Rescue Service’s recruitment and retention manager, said: “We always love showing people what it is like to be a modern firefighter and and demonstrating what we can do.”

Members of the public were able to meet teams from Stowmarket and Needham Market fire station. Picture: Mark Westley
Members of the public were able to meet teams from Stowmarket and Needham Market fire station. Picture: Mark Westley

Mr Hazelwood, who worked as an on call firefighter for 37 years in Newmarket, said although the open day was about recruitment, they welcomed children along to the joint fire and police station in Needham Road.

The emergency service hub in Stowmarket officially opened in March 2023.

He said: “It is crucial young people get an understanding of the blue light emergency services.”

Jude and Arlo Attwell from Needham Market at the recruitment open day at Stowmarket’s new fire station. Picture: Mark Westley
Jude and Arlo Attwell from Needham Market at the recruitment open day at Stowmarket’s new fire station. Picture: Mark Westley

Suffolk Fire and Rescue Service is recruiting on call firefighters across the county, however Saturday’s open day was for those living in the Stowmarket and Needham Market area.

Crews from both stations chatted to members of the public, giving them an insight into how being on call works – alongside family and work life.

Mr Hazelwood said recruitment events allowed the service to bust myths about being an on call firefighter.

He said: “We are starting to see more females interested in the service and there are female firefighters at both Stowmarket and Needham.”

Stowmarket Fire Station watch Manager Joseph Bishop. Picture: Mark Westley
Stowmarket Fire Station watch Manager Joseph Bishop. Picture: Mark Westley

You can become an on call firefighter from the age of 18. It is a paid role, which can be done alongside full or part time employment.

When their buzzers sound, on call firefighters have a set time period to get to their assigned station and on to a fire engine, which is why it is crucial they live locally.

You can find out more about the tests you need to pass to become an on call firefighter here.

Contact Mr Hazelwood for more information by emailing: martyn.hazelwood@suffolk.gov.uk.

Stowmarket Fire Station, Needham Road, Stowmarket. Recruitment open day at Stowmarket’s new fire station .Picture by Mark Westley
Stowmarket Fire Station, Needham Road, Stowmarket. Recruitment open day at Stowmarket’s new fire station .Picture by Mark Westley

There is no upper age limit on applying, however a yearly fitness test is required.