People who live within 10 minutes of Newtown Fire Station are being urged to join the fire service to help save lives and make a difference in their community as on-call firefighters.

Station commander Andrew Richards said: "You’re working in an area where you might have relatives, friends and neighbours and you’re there helping them directly. The impact that you have is huge, it’s absolutely huge."

The fire service wants potential recruits to come along on a Tuesday night to have a chat about the role when firefighters are on drills from 6.30pm to 8.30pm.

"Those who join us are not just that person down the street, they’re the firefighter on the street and people know that and so if there’s any difficulties, they know who to go to,” said SC Andrews.

“It does carry a lot of responsibility. You’re dealing with fires, rescues, flooding especially which seems to be greater and greater year on year.

"They have to manage their workplace, family life and the fire service. We certainly have got room to join us.


"For us to function as a fire service we have got have employers on board to release their employees. Obviously when there is a busy period and they can’t, it’s not a problem. Between us and them we can work it out. We have an electronic system so individuals can manage it, so our truck is always available.

“What they’re having is an employee who’s trained in first aid, their health and safety aware, communication and leadership skills. We put them through leadership courses which is a cost that’s not borne by the employers, but they gain from that.”

Watch Manager Mike Wareing added: "The life skills you learn are transferable to your day job or normal life, it’s great.

"You can learn first aid which I’ve used a couple of times in my day role. In fact, on New Year's last year there was a gentleman who had a heart attack. I met him when I went back to Blackpool four months ago and he’s still alive. It’s nice to have that feeling when that happens."

Mid and West Wales Fire and Rescue Service currently have on-call firefighter vacancies in Abercrave, Brecon, Builth Wells, Crickhowell, Hay on Wye, Knighton, Llandrindod Wells, Llanfair Caereinion, Llanfyllin, Llanidloes, Llanwrtyd Wells, Machynlleth, Montgomery, Presteigne, Rhayader, Talgarth and Welshpool.