ESSEX County Fire and Rescue Service has honoured its long serving employees in a special awards presentation.
The event, which was held online for the first time due to Covid-19 restrictions, celebrated the long servicing fire service employees that have completed 20 years’ service and more.
Firefighters who have completed 20 years’ service were awarded The Fire Brigade’s Long Service and Good Conduct Medals. These medals are awarded nationally, on behalf of Her Majesty the Queen, to all operational staff who have completed twenty years of outstanding service to the public.
Special awards were also presented to support staff who had completed 20 years’ service and employees who had completed 40 years service and more.
Chief Fire Officer/Chief Executive Jo Turton said:
“These awards are one of the highlights of my year and I am so pleased that although the restrictions meant that we couldn’t meet in person we could still celebrate and pay tribute to the hard work and dedication of our employees.
“This is the first year we have hosted the Long Service awards online, but nothing was going to stop us celebrating the achievements of employees – especially during a year in which so many have gone above and beyond their role to help keep our communities safe.
“I am so incredibly proud of the achievements of all of our colleagues who have completed such exemplary service to our communities. Hearing about their individual journeys and what they have achieved throughout their career is truly inspiring.”
Roger Hirst, Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner for Essex, said:
“On behalf of the people of Essex, I want to say a huge thank to every firefighter and member of staff who received medals for their commitment and service to our county.
“The challenging roles they perform make such a difference to people’s lives. Every day firefighters walk towards danger to help people when they need it the most and staff provide the support to enable them to do so, this has especially true during this pandemic where I know many have stepped up to volunteer in a range of frontline roles.
“As well as saying thank you to them we should also recognise the loved ones and families behind the scenes who have played an essential role in supporting them throughout their long and distinguished careers. It was an honour to attend this virtual service and mark the occasion.”
Lord Lieutenant of Essex Mrs Jennifer Tolhurst, said:
“I am really delighted to be able to recognise the Long Service and Good Conduct of the 26 members of Essex County Fire and Rescue Service at the online event this evening. It will be a different sort of ceremony but a very important moment in the year to say thank you to the men and women of Essex County Fire and Rescue Service for the wonderful work that they do and in particular to note the great contribution they have made during the pandemic as Ambulance drivers; also training non-emergency ambulance drivers, helping set up hospitals and now vaccination centres, and delivering food and medicine to vulnerable residents. Their service to the county has been immense. Thank you very much indeed.”
Congratulations to all the award winners.
The Fire Brigade’s 20 Year Long Service Good Conduct Award
Alistair Castle, Firefighter, Old Harlow
Andre Turner, Watch Manager Protection
Craig McLellan, Station Manager Basildon, Billericay & Wickford
Dan Finch, Crew Manager, Harlow
Gavin Tripp, Station Manager, Braintree, Coggeshall, Halstead and Witham
James Taylor, Group Manager, North West Group
Jon Webster, Watch Manager Protection
Mark Crouch, Watch Manager, Operational and Community Risk
Mark Nevill, Watch Manager Leaden Roding
Martin Stoker, Crew Manager, Dovercourt
Russ Freeman, Station Manager, Grays
Sunil Galvin, Crew Manager, Colchester
Steve Kirkham, Apprentice Support Manager, Operations
Tim Roedel, Firefighter, Shoeburyness
Support staff awards
David Bayes, Engineer, Fleet Workshops – 20 years
Maria Edwards, Administrator, Property Services – 20 years
Paula Drane, Finance Manager – 30 years
Rebecca Kinchin, Performance & Data Management – 20 years
Sarah Webster, Payroll Manager, Payroll – 20 years
Tracy King, Assistant Director Performance & Data Management – 20 years
Derek Whitbread, Watch Manager, Epping Fire Station – 45 years
Martin Cable, Watch Manager Maldon Fire Station – 45 years
Neil Byford, Watch Manager Newport – 40 years
Roger Pickett, Assistant Curator, Essex Fire Museum – 44 years
Steve Foster, Technical Services and Asset Manager, Technical Services – 40 years