Issued on: Tuesday 2 April 2019

Fire Service Joins Forces with Loughborough College

Leicestershire Fire and Rescue Service have joined forces with Loughborough College to develop connections with young people who maybe considering a career in the fire and rescue service.

As part of the collaboration with the college, students from the Uniformed Public Services course were given a real insight into what it’s like to be a firefighter for the day.

On Friday 29 March, twenty students aged 16 to 18, were put through their paces as they took part in fire and rescue service Point Of Entry Selection Tests.

After kitting up in firefighter uniform and receiving a brief from firefighters, the students tackled six tests, which included: manual dexterity, equipment carry, ladder climbing, simulated ladder lift, casualty evacuation and enclosed space simulation.

Vince Howard, Leicestershire Fire and Rescue Services’ On-Call Liaison Officer, said: “By working in collaboration with Loughborough College, we are providing the overarching support to give students a pathway between their mainstream education and their fulltime employment with Leicestershire Fire and Rescue Service, or any other unformed service they may choose to go on to in the future.”

Dean Thornton, Station Manager, Learning and Development at Leicestershire Fire and Rescue Service, said: “We were thrilled with each and every one of the students. Their efforts were outstanding, and who knows we could have witnessed some up-and-coming firefighters of the future!”

Shaun Hession, Uniformed Public Services lecturer at Loughborough College – who himself spent 25 years as a firefighter with Leicestershire Fire and Rescue, said: “Our pioneering collaboration with Leicestershire Fire and Rescue Service offered our students a fantastic opportunity to gain a first hand insight into life as a firefighter.

“The students were under the watchful eye of experienced firefighters and it was a safe and encouraging environment – but that doesn’t mean that every one of the six tasks which made up the Point of Entry Selection Test didn’t take them way out of their comfort zone.

“There is no doubt they faced a massive challenge but they learnt so many skills, were able to assess areas they may need to enhance and gained an incredible amount of confidence. It was brilliant to see how proud the students all were of what they had achieved. 

”We’re very much looking forward to seeing how our new partnership with the Service will develop and continue to benefit our students.”

Ben Rhodes, a Loughborough College Uniformed Public Services student, said: “It was a lot of fun but much harder than I thought it would be. The equipment carry really pushed me physically and the manual dexterity test looked easy – until it was my turn! I was so happy to complete everything and to get good times. I one hundred per cent want to look at joining the fire service now – and being given the chance to do the test means I know what I need to focus on to have a good chance of success.”

Fellow Uniformed Public Services student Sophie Fletcher, added: “I was a bit nervous before the test because I really didn’t know what to expect but the firefighters were so supportive. I wasn’t keen on the confined spaces task – they put a special mask on you that blocks you being able to see – but I was told to breathe and keep calm and I was so proud when I completed it. It certainly gave me an insight into the fire service as a potential career and it was such a great experience and I enjoyed it so much, I’m definitely considering it now.”

For more information about joining Leicestershire Fire and Rescue Service as a firefighter, including the tests and requirements involved, visit .


Notes to Editors:
Interviews can be arranged through prior arrangement with Corporate Communications on the details below.

About the Service

Leicestershire Fire and Rescue Service provides emergency response, prevention and protection services from 20 stations across Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland. Its headquarters is based in Birstall, Leicester.

The Service’s prevention, education, enforcement and inspection programmes have resulted in significant reductions in the number of incidents. In the last ten years, fire-related incidents have reduced by 43 percent. 

During 2016/17, the Service attended 694 road traffic collisions, of which 148 were extrications from vehicles, in addition to ­2,259 fires. 272 schools were visited as part of the Service’s schools programme, delivering fire and road safety education to pupils. Staff organised or took part in 1,613 community safety events, promoting fire and road safety and arson prevention, and 145 Virtual Fatal Four (VF4) events as part of the Service’s young drivers’ road safety project. 

Corporate Communications
Direct: 0116 229 2195

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