History of Chirk Fire Station
The story of Chirk’s history, as far as fire fighting goes, started way
back on 1st December 1940 when, due to the dependency of fire cover placed
upon the Oswestry Town, Llangollen Borough and/or Wrexham Borough Fire
Brigade respectively, the first band of volunteers were enrolled by the
Ceiriog Rural District Council as part of the war time auxiliary fire
Up to this time there was no
standard in equipment so great difficulty was found when a Brigade went to
assist in another area. Such downfalls showed up when Chirk personnel
witnessed a house fire across the valley from the ‘Mount’ and were
unable to assist because it was across the border in England. With
unacceptable incidents like this the government decided to nationalise the
fire brigades, hence on 18th October 1941 the National Fire Service was
Photo Call at the Opening of the Longfield Fire Station 1943
During these early days at
Longfleld Fire Station there were as many as 60 volunteers on station.
These consisted of Officer, Fire Fighters, Firewomen and Messengers. They
had various equipment, namely an Austin Auxiliary Towing Vehicle; a NFS
Portable Pump, a Scammel Major Pump, later they received customised
vehicles, e.g. a furniture truck with one mile of hose, a Ford Thames
Truck with a canvas dam built on the top which held 1,000 gallons of water
and a portable pump, with this idea being used nowadays on every water
With the acquisition of the new
Fire Station, the ERF will be replaced by the new modern Volvo fire
fighting appliance. This has all the latest specifications such as
power steering, automatic transmission, easily accessible equipment
and a 207 bhp turbo charged diesel engine.
The personnel of Chirk Fire
Station have attended numerous incidents over the years, and have, for
instance, been awarded certificates by the R.S.P.C.A. for rescuing animals
in dangerous situations. It is difficult to pick a few of these incidents
to give a flavour of the dangerous and varied work carried out by Firemen,
but there are some that spring readily to mind and may be of interest to
In another incident a call was received to a crashed aircraft. An airfield was constructed in Chirk on the land attached to Ley Farm, Black Park. Not long after it was opened a light aircraft had stalled on takeoff and nose dived into an adjacent field killing the two occupants.
An incident that is difficult for a previous Officer in Charge, Sub 0. Cranshaw, to forget did not occur in Chirk but in the Oswestry area about 10 years ago when he was a Leading Fireman. A large fire occurred at Lloyds Animal Feeds, Llynclys to which Chirk’s appliances attended. The fire involved large quantities of processed animal fats. Whilst manning a jet inside the building he fell into a pit of molten fat and luckily was quickly rescued by colleagues, to whom he knows he owes his life thanks to their prompt actions.
Finally an incident that occurred in February 1980 at Cadburys factory in Chirk. On arrival the Chirk crew found the premises extensively smoke logged by a fire involving filters. Once extinguished it was discovered damage caused was estimated at over 1 million.
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