Aug Wednesday 10 2011
Today, all the team’s vehicles and trailers including our SAR Boat took part in th Greater Manchester Emergency Services Open Day at the Trafford Centre, Manchester.
Given the civil unrest and disorder of the previous day and evening in Manchester and Salford, all the emergency services due to attend still met their commitments, particularly Greater Manchester Police.
The forecast for the day was one of heavy rain, fortunately for the event the morning stayed relatively dry, sadly the afternoon deteriorated into one of torrential rain and given that all the emergency services present were displaying largely outdoors, it was amazing that the few members of the public who did visit managed to do so at all.
Despite the bad weather and in the case of some of the emergency services, other priorities in their minds, all attending services still managed to put on an excellent show for the public.
The event also gave all the emergency services present a somewhat unique opportunity to liaise with each other, cement friendships, compare equipment and jointly somehow manage to get through the torrential rain….
Our team provided hot and cold drinks for all the emergency services personnel present on site, with thanks to Bolton MRT Support Group members Gillian Gregory and Iain Clarkson for serving up the drinks, ably assisted by our Team President Bob Hutchinson.
Special thanks must go the Subway food outlet in the Trafford Centre, who in a tremendous show of fantastic support and goodwill towards all the emergency services personnel present, kindly provided food free of charge to all personnel present.
Thanks are also expressed to the management of the Trafford Centre for kindly allowing this event to take place (which it is hoped will become an annual event, albeit with better weather!)
The final words can go to GMFRS Stretford Fire Station Commander Ben Levy, who had the orginal idea for this event and acted as the principal organiser. We report below in full his kind words expressed in an email to all the services present today:
Despite current high profile and highly resourced activities, and other unfortunate last minute commitments, I must say how pleased I was that we were able to deliver our Emergency Services Open Day today at The Trafford Centre, as planned. We had in attendance approximately 52 vehicles and stalls, and over 140 personnel. The agencies represented included;
- Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service
- Greater Manchester Police
- North West Ambulance Service Hazardous Area Response Team
- North West Air Ambulance Service
- Bolton Mountain Rescue Team
- Rossendale & Pendle Mountain Rescue Team
- British Red Cross Fire Emergency Support Service
- GMFRS Fire Service Museum
- Trafford Road Safety Team
- Greater Manchester Police Road Safety (Mobile Speed Camera)
- Greater Manchester Police Authority
- RSPCA Swiftwater Rescue Team
- FAM Recovery Road Safety Display
And all this, despite what was probably the worst day of weather we have had for a few months, with torrential rain throughout the day.
During the afternoon we received a visit from The High Sheriff of Greater Manchester, Mrs Christine Lee-Jones who continually expressed her admiration and respect for all the services involved and their commitment to the event.
I will be passing written thanks on behalf of us all to The Trafford Centre management team for their support of the day, and also to Subway, who provided lunch for all attendees without charge. I hope you will also join me in thanking the Bolton Mountain Rescue Team for keeping us refreshed through the day with hot drinks from their canteen unit.
Finally, thanks to all the individuals who attended. It wasn’t the sunniest of August days, but despite this we had quite a high turnover of public, who saw nothing but an enthusiastic group of professionals sharing their expertise, advice and knowledge. I would like to close by sharing with you a comment that has appeared on The Trafford Centre’s Facebook page this afternoon;
‘….. we have been down today, kids had a fantastic time, double heros, watchin our backs and educating our kids …..’
Let’s do it again next summer…..
Kind regards and many personal thanks,
Stretford Fire Station
In total today, 16 callout list members attended along with two Support Group members. Team member Mark Parry and Support Group members Clare and Peter Whitney also joined in for a short while whilst visiting the Trafford Centre.