Last Roll Call at A27 Clerkenwell, the Oldest Fire Station in Europe

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What is a family?

If You look into the dictionary, is a group consisting of two parents and their children living together as a unit, or a unit of the Mafia, or a group of related things, from Latin, means ¨Familia¨. But I really like the Origin definition, late Middle English, ¨Family¨  ¨denoting the servants of a household or the retinue of a nobleman¨

This is what we really are. Firefighters work as a family, we are servants of our duty, our household is London and we believe in the good that human being can do to others. It could be a selfish feeling, saving someones life, or helping others when they more need it, and getting an adrenaline rush at the same time.

But it´s a positive, good selfish act for society, for us. And I know my family is safe because all of us look after each other inside and outside the station. Coming back to the dictionary a ¨Group is a number of people who work together or share certain beliefs¨. And we belief in honesty, in courage, in motivation, in fairness, in loyalty, in life beyond us, we belief in others. I feel very emotional writing these lines, but I really need it. Not only for the lost of my family,  but for the distance too, hurts too much. These lines are easing the pain.

On my journey into A27 Clerkenwell Fire Station, a group of friends known as my green watch Family, the ones I will miss forever. I worked in many places and with many people, however I don´t know another watch or anywhere else where I’ve been lucky to be part of. I always said, ¨The choices we make, dictate the life we live¨ and I know now I made the right one moving into A27 Clerkenwell.

What we created at A27 Clerkenwell green watch, is a mix of everyone in there. I feel grateful for all of you guys and the memories and experiences we had, have made me a better firefighter, a better person. Even on a bad day, a had a good one. I have a bit of every one of you, and with tears in my eyes I type these lines to help me out in this detox process. I need to move on. Whatever happens to the place, may it bring as much joy to others, as it did for us.

My frustration is because we didn’t make the decision of breaking the family apart, and we strongly feel that it was unnecessary.

As always, time will tell, we already know.

Goodbye A27 Clerkenwell Green Watch, serving Londoners since 1870.

Pictures

Our Home A27 Clerkenwell

Our Home A27 Clerkenwell

Our Home A27 Clerkenwell

Our Home A27 Clerkenwell

Firefighters

Firefighters

Britain Marks The 10th Anniversary Of 9/11

Remembering day

Remembering day

LFB A 27 At station - 32

Front

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Back

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Our great Ladder

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Daily Checks

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Drilling for your safety

LFB A 27 At station - 01

Ready for action

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The old and the new uniform

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A276 FRU
Fire Rescue Unit

Clerkenwell   - 2

A271 PL
Pump Ladder

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The last Fire Call

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Empty Station

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We protest for you Londoners

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Alex you are The BEST

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8 thoughts on “Last Roll Call at A27 Clerkenwell, the Oldest Fire Station in Europe

  1. I served over 27 years in the LFB and know what you’re referring to when you mention ‘family’. The trouble is that the people who hold the purse strings and make decisions about the LFB are just pencil-pushers. In their corporate world they have no idea how the fire service works, they fail to understand how closely firefighters work together, they cannot begin to guess what it feels like to have a level of trust in your colleagues that allows you to place your safety in their hands – these things do not occur in their world, the office environment.
    For years before I retired, I was convinced that the non-uniformed staff simply saw the operational side of the service (you know, the people who actually get their hands dirty) as an inconvenience to their empire building. There were the same number of fire stations and uniformed staff but the civilian side outgrew the HQ floors at Lambeth and overflowed into two other buildings and their numbers were still expanding when I left. In my opinion it was, is and should always remain the ‘civvies’ supporting the workers at fire stations because the LFB is a public service, not a money making mechanism and cannot be run like a business by faceless characters who, apparently, outranked most fire station ranks.
    The service should be run by people who have served a period of time in uniform, preferably on operations (although I strongly doubt that a buffoon like Boris could even find the high end of a pitched ladder) and who understand what makes the service and its personnel tick.
    No good can come of the fire station closures and loss of jobs and I hope that those responsible for them never get a restful night’s sleep again.

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    • Thanks Derek for your sincere comment. Moving HQ from Lambeth to Union St was a big mistake and it showed us that the people who did it don’t even know how to read the small print on a contract, how are they going to understand all you just said. Who was responsible for leaving Lambeth empty and expend all tax payers money? Be safe and sound

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  2. I was in town recently for work and found myself walking by this station each morning, wondering how it was a fire station but not open? Sad to hear it has closed after such long history. Beautiful building even to a person totally unaware of it’s heritage. Best to you all. – Katie, NYC

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    • Hi Katie

      Many thanks for your words. It is a pity that our politicians are destroying what we have built in many years. Quality public services.
      Mr Boris, goes to New York and visits our colleagues over there, like he cares about us or you.
      I am posting some more pictures from that horrible day, when we lost 14 Fire engines and 550 firefighters, and our respond time has been affected of course.

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