Group turns up the heat

Young Firefighters Association drill competition winners 2011 ' Pegswood Young Firefighters. 'From left: (Front row) Acting chief fire officer, Alex Bennett, Councillor Anita Romer and Cameron Woods. (Second row) Ben Wright Adam Nixon, Joanna Allman, Natasha Malley and Matthew Dickinson. (Third row) Lewis Hollan, Conor Reed, Josh Allman and Ross Harkins. (Back row) Ian Moffat, David Smith and Craig Barnfather.
Young Firefighters Association drill competition winners 2011 ' Pegswood Young Firefighters. 'From left: (Front row) Acting chief fire officer, Alex Bennett, Councillor Anita Romer and Cameron Woods. (Second row) Ben Wright Adam Nixon, Joanna Allman, Natasha Malley and Matthew Dickinson. (Third row) Lewis Hollan, Conor Reed, Josh Allman and Ross Harkins. (Back row) Ian Moffat, David Smith and Craig Barnfather.
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YOUNG firefighters turned up the heat on the opposition as they swept to victory in a county competition.

Members of the Pegswood Young Firefighters group lit up the annual Young Firefighters Association (YFA) contest to take three out of five category awards and pick up the overall trophy.

The group, which battled teams from West Hartford, Berwick, Belford, Alnwick and Hexham, won the Ladder Drill, Hose Drill and quiz.

The competition, which was held at West Hartford community fire station, is now in its third year, testing skills, team work and problem-solving.

Northumberland County Council Executive Member for Public Protection Anita Romer said: “I really enjoyed watching the competition and meeting the young people who took part.

“The Young Firefighters Association teaches its members such valuable skills, such as team work, planning and fire safety, and importantly it’s all done in a fun, enjoyable way.”

Weekly YFA meetings are held at fire stations across the county for teenagers aged 13 to 17.

As well as learning practical skills from firefighters, members visit brigade headquarters and can work towards a Level 2 BTEC qualification in Fire and Rescue Services in the Community.

For more information contact Laura Langdown on 01670 591155.

Meanwhile, fire services in Northumberland have picked up their own accolade following a successful building programme.

The North East Fire and Rescue Authority (NEFRA), which is made up of services in Northumberland, Tyne and Wear and Durham, was the biggest winner at the Partnerships Bulletin Awards last month.

The organisation took the Best Accommodation title, as well as the Projects Grand Prix international award for delivering outstanding improvement in public service, for its project to build five new community fire stations through a Private Finance Initiative.

The scheme, which provided stations at Pegswood and West Hartford, was supported by a number of local businesses, including project manager John Laing Investments, building contractor Shepherd Construction, technical advisor Mouchel, legal adviser Dickinson Dees and Napper Architects.

Northumberland Acting Chief Fire Officer Alex Bennett said: “All of those who were involved in the building projects from conception to completion are to be congratulated for their hard work in making these fantastic projects a success.

“These awards recognise the quality of the work that was carried out between all of the partners involved.

“All five fire stations are now integral parts of the communities they serve.”

The other stations were built at Bishop Auckland, North Shields and Spennymoor.