Today, 31 March, sees the end of Dorset Fire and Rescue Service as it combines with Wiltshire Fire and Rescue to form Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service from 1 April. To celebrate this exciting and historic moment and commemorate the positive impact Dorset Fire and Rescue Service has had on the lives of so many residents; DFRS will be holding a ‘closing ceremony’ at Service HQ, Dorchester from 12pm.
The closing ceremony will see members of the community, dignitaries, local councillors and staff, come together to hear how DFRS has impacted on so many lives. Speakers will not only include the Chief Fire Officer Darran Gunter and Chairman of Dorset Fire Authority Cllr Rebecca Knox but also Lord Lieutenant of Dorset Angus Campbell and High Sheriff Sir Philip Williams Bt JP DL as well as Chief Executive of East Boro Housing Trust Kevin Hodder and Watch Manager Matt Kiddell.
The event will commemorate those members of staff who lost their lives serving Dorset Fire and Rescue Service. The Reverend Canon Andrew Haviland of Bryanston School will be in attendance to give a blessing at the final lowering of the Dorset Fire and Rescue Service Standard and to see the raising of the Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service Standard.
Chief Fire Officer, Darran Gunter said: “This is an exciting time for Dorset, Wiltshire, Bournemouth, Poole and Swindon but it is right that we celebrate the lives we have touched within Dorset and those who have given their lives in service to their community. Over the 68 years that Dorset Fire and Rescue Service has been in existence it has touched the lives of many, whether that be through home safety visits, incidents, youth intervention programmes, charity events and much more. I am looking forward to celebrating those achievements with staff past and present and to the new challenges in our combination with Wiltshire.”
Chairman of Dorset Fire and Rescue Authority, Cllr Rebecca Knox said: “After the final Dorset Fire Authority meeting, it is only right that we pause to take stock of all that has been achieved by the authority and Dorset Fire and Rescue Service. We will be welcoming previous Chief Fire Officers, longest serving members of staff and the fire authority. All these individuals have had a significant impact on the work and direction of the authority.”