Essex Fire Museum

Essex Fire Museum Welcome to the official page of the Essex Fire Museum Housing a collection featuring historic fire engines, firefighting equipment, uniforms and photographs, the Essex Fire Museum gives visitors the opportunity to take a fascinating look at the history of the fire service here in Essex.
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Visitors to the museum will see for themselves how firefighting has changed over the years as the technology has advanced. Collected and curated by former Grays Firefighter Roger Pickett, the Essex Fire Museum provides a fascinating look back into the history of the fire service and the men and women who fought fires to keep the public safe. The museum plays a key role in the Service’s educational

Visitors to the museum will see for themselves how firefighting has changed over the years as the technology has advanced. Collected and curated by former Grays Firefighter Roger Pickett, the Essex Fire Museum provides a fascinating look back into the history of the fire service and the men and women who fought fires to keep the public safe. The museum plays a key role in the Service’s educational

Operating as usual

We had a special visit to the Essex Fire Museum recently when on-call firefighter, Nick Walton from Waltham Abbey, broug...
05/07/2021

We had a special visit to the Essex Fire Museum recently when on-call firefighter, Nick Walton from Waltham Abbey, brought his Dad along to look at the equipmentof yesteryear. He was a retained fireman for 17 years at Cannock in Staffordshire so enjoyed looking around and reminiscing about his time with Staffordshire Fire Service.

We had a special visit to the Essex Fire Museum recently when on-call firefighter, Nick Walton from Waltham Abbey, brought his Dad along to look at the equipmentof yesteryear. He was a retained fireman for 17 years at Cannock in Staffordshire so enjoyed looking around and reminiscing about his time with Staffordshire Fire Service.

Our thoughts go out to Her Majesty the Queen and other members of the Royal family following the sad news of Prince Phil...
09/04/2021

Our thoughts go out to Her Majesty the Queen and other members of the Royal family following the sad news of Prince Philip's passing earlier today.

https://www.facebook.com/151274568227715/posts/4109633689058430/

It is with deep sorrow that Her Majesty The Queen has announced the death of her beloved husband, His Royal Highness The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh.

His Royal Highness passed away peacefully this morning at Windsor Castle.

The Royal Family join with people around the world in mourning his loss.

Further announcements will be made in due course. Visit www.royal.uk to read the announcement in full.

03/02/2021
LGBT History Month - The history of the flag

The first week of #LGBTHistoryMonth is also #RaceEqualityWeek and you might have noticed our profile pictures have all changed to the Progress Flag.

Last year, our LGBTQ+ network BEING, changed its logo to the Progress Flag to recognise our Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic communities and our transgender communities.

We want to recognise all of our communities and want you to know that fire doesn't discriminate and neither do we!

Read more about our LGBT History Month celebrations here:
https://youtu.be/3Gi3BcWkE6U

31/01/2021

We've been having fun with 'What3Words' this weekend, travelling virtually around the globe to various locations. Where is this unique code taking you?:
roving.pouting.excuse

If you've not heard of 'What3Words' before, it is a free app that can help us find you in an emergency. The world has been broken down into 3m x 3m squares, and with each square being allocated three random words a unique code is created.

31/01/2021

This 'What3Words' post is slightly different as we are providing two codes for you to find. We would like you to tell us what you think these are used for:
pancake.lunged.converged
stumble.mango.arranged

31/01/2021

We're back on our travels again thanks to 'What3Words'! But where are we going?
dolly.crowbar.blunt

If you've not heard of 'What3Words' before, it is a free app that can help us find you in an emergency. The world has been broken down into 3m x 3m squares, and with each square being allocated three random words a unique code is created.

31/01/2021

Righty ho, where to next...?
study.month.silly

Where have you been taken to via the magic of 'What3Words'?

If you've not heard of 'What3Words' before, it is a free app that can help us find you in an emergency. The world has been broken down into 3m x 3m squares, and with each square being allocated three random words a unique code is created.

31/01/2021

For our first 'What3Words' code today, we would like you to tell us a little about the location in relation to the fire service as well as the location itself:
play.remind.tamed

If you've not heard of 'What3Words' before, it is a free app that can help us find you in an emergency. The world has been broken down into 3m x 3m squares, and with each square being allocated three random words a unique code is created.

30/01/2021

Dust your passports down, we're going further afield with our next unique 'What3Words' code:
august.vines.oddly

Where have you found yourself? What can you find out about that location?

'What3Words' is a free app that can help us find you in an emergency.

30/01/2021

We are having a little fun with 'What3Words', which is a free app that can help us find you in an emergency. If you haven't already done so, download it and reply in the comments where this unique code takes you to:
epic.pasta.every

Have you been here?

30/01/2021

Our next 'What3Words' location is:
good.simply.stars

Where does this take you? Can you tell us one fact about this location?

'What3Words' is a free app that can us find you in an emergency - or help you find each other!

30/01/2021

If you are unfamiliar with 'What3Words' it's a really useful tool that breaks down the world into 3m x 3m squares. Each square is assigned three words giving it a unique reference.

Emergency services are encouraging people to download it on to their phones (it's free) as it can help us pin point them in an emergency. Only recently, we were able to find someone who needed help while out on a walk in the countryside.

We have decided to have a little fun with this and will be providing some unique references for you to search for and let us know where in the world we have taken you to.

Our first 'What3Words' reference is:
seasonal.thundered.trustees

Following on from this morning's post regarding the drill held in Frinton in the 1930's, here is another photo from our ...
29/01/2021

Following on from this morning's post regarding the drill held in Frinton in the 1930's, here is another photo from our Frinton file, reportedly taken some time in the 1920's, of the crew posing in front of their horse-drawn engine.

The officers can be recognised by the silver scale epaulettes on their shoulders. Many of those in the photo are wearing medals, some of which may have been awarded during the Great War. The officer seated second from the left with rank markings on his sleeve is their chief, with the other two his deputies.

Looking at this photo and the last one on the previous post, you will notice the shield is the same in both, so this would be the winning crew from a previous year's competition.

Who can spot the policeman (as they were then called) hiding in the background?

Following on from this morning's post regarding the drill held in Frinton in the 1930's, here is another photo from our Frinton file, reportedly taken some time in the 1920's, of the crew posing in front of their horse-drawn engine.

The officers can be recognised by the silver scale epaulettes on their shoulders. Many of those in the photo are wearing medals, some of which may have been awarded during the Great War. The officer seated second from the left with rank markings on his sleeve is their chief, with the other two his deputies.

Looking at this photo and the last one on the previous post, you will notice the shield is the same in both, so this would be the winning crew from a previous year's competition.

Who can spot the policeman (as they were then called) hiding in the background?

29/01/2021

Keep your eyes peeled as we will be having a little fun with the 'What3Words' app. We will provide a unique three word code, type it into the 'What3Words' app and tell us where you are.

If you've not heard of this before, 'What3Words' is a free app that can help us find you in an emergency. The world has been broken down into 3m x 3m squares, and with each square being allocated three random words a unique code is created.

If your vehicle breaks down on a country lane, or you injure yourself whilst out on walk, using this app can quickly help guide people to your exact location.

In our Frinton photos file are these lovely items showing drills being carried out in public with a good crowd watching ...
29/01/2021

In our Frinton photos file are these lovely items showing drills being carried out in public with a good crowd watching them.

In the last photo, the moustachioed firemen (as they were then called) in their brass helmets are posing around a table on which are displayed a large carriage clock, a picture in a frame (unfortunately we cannot see what the picture is) and a shield awarded to the victors.

There are also two other men, also part of the crew but wearing berets. Both males are wearing the same belt as the other firemen; the one standing has rope visible hanging from his belt, whilst the handle of an axe is just visible on the seated man's left hip.

Drill competitions for both wholetime and retained (on-call) stations were a regular occurrence with crews competing against colleagues at other stations. Competitions still happen nationally and internationally - with our own extrication team (e.g. vehicle crashes) are UK champions!
United Kingdom Rescue Organisation

28/01/2021

Keep your eyes peeled for a little fun with the 'What3Words' app. We will be giving you a unique three word code, just type it into the 'What3Words' app and tell us where you are.

If you've not heard of this before, 'What3Words' is a free app that can help us find you in an emergency. The world has been broken down into 3m x 3m squares, and with each square being allocated three random words a unique code is created.

If your vehicle breaks down on a country lane, or you injure yourself whilst out on walk, using this app can quickly help guide people to your exact location.

This photograph was taken at Clacton fire station in the 1970's and shows a sub officer talking to smiling children of a...
28/01/2021

This photograph was taken at Clacton fire station in the 1970's and shows a sub officer talking to smiling children of all ages, some wearing the old cork helmets. Many are sitting on a Turntable Ladder, an example of which we have at the museum.

Were you one of those children? Can you remember going there that day? What was the reason for your visit?

This photograph was taken at Clacton fire station in the 1970's and shows a sub officer talking to smiling children of all ages, some wearing the old cork helmets. Many are sitting on a Turntable Ladder, an example of which we have at the museum.

Were you one of those children? Can you remember going there that day? What was the reason for your visit?

Hello all, I hope you are keeping safe and well. The museum will now be closed until next Easter but we will continue to...
25/11/2020

Hello all, I hope you are keeping safe and well.

The museum will now be closed until next Easter but we will continue to post on here until then and beyond.

We're looking forward to opening our doors again and welcoming you all back!

The images below are from the Wrights Aircraft fire in Nazeing in 1953.

A comment on one of the film clips posted recently mentioned how there might be regional terms for items of clothing - w...
22/11/2020

A comment on one of the film clips posted recently mentioned how there might be regional terms for items of clothing - what we called (and still call) 'leggings' (the item of PPE worn over trousers), someone else called 'slickers'.

On their top half, operational crew will wear a tunic, with a helmet on their head and boots on their feet.

Does anyone know of any alternative terms for these, or perhaps other items used within different fire services? (Keep them clean please!)

Here we can see one of our new recruits demonstrating our uniform from the 1970's & 80's (don't they look young these days?).

20/11/2020

It is with great sadness that retired Divisional Officer Patrick Cahill has passed away peacefully at home.

Retired Divisional Officer Patrick Cahill, known as Pat, joined our Service in 1971 and retired in June 2009 after a 38 year career.
During his time at our Service, Pat served at Brentwood, Hadleigh, Southend, Leigh, South Woodham Ferrers, Great Baddow, and Chelmsford Fire Stations. Pat also worked at Service Headquarters and Training Centres as a Divisional Officer towards the end of his career.

November 18th 1987: The worst fire in the history of the London Underground killed 31 people, including Stn Officer Coli...
18/11/2020

November 18th 1987: The worst fire in the history of the London Underground killed 31 people, including Stn Officer Colin Townsley, and injured 100's of others. The blaze began in decades old filth below a wooden escalator serving Piccadilly Line platforms in King’s Cross Underground station and soon filled the tunnels with dense, choking smoke and intense heat.

Despite trying to blame the fire soley on a tube passenger's carelessly dropped cigarette or match, the investigators found a build-up of lubricant grease, oils and other flammables under the wooden escalators, this filth was heavily impregnated with fibrous materials - old rags, fluff from clothes, old tickets and other litter, human hair, rat fur, etc which acted as a wick.

This accumulation had been neglegently allowed to gather, untouched for over 30 years - just waiting for a spark.

London Undergound management were also blamed for not providing Fire or First Aid training, nor placing adequate fire-fighting equipment, on the day, staff had only buckets of sand and a few obselete water extinguishers.

London Underground was strongly criticised for its attitude toward fires. Staff were complacent because there had never been a fatal fire on the Underground, and had been given little or no training to deal with fires or evacuation. Smoking on the London Undergound network had been prohibited since 1984, over three years before the King's Cross tragedy.

A report was published on the inquiry, leading to resignations of senior management in both London Underground and London Regional Transport. The old Wooden escalators were gradually replaced with modern machinery.

Credit: Maybe It's Because I'm A Londoner, Ian A Biddell (Facebook)

We are supporting a campaign to digitise the Thurrock Gazette - if it gets enough votes, the British Newspaper Archive w...
18/11/2020
Albert Wm Gosnall – Help & Advice | Give us feedback | British Newspaper Archive

We are supporting a campaign to digitise the Thurrock Gazette - if it gets enough votes, the British Newspaper Archive will prioritise it in their list of papers. The Thurrock Gazette has covered events of national significance as well as many fire service related incidents, and is the most consulted item in the museum archive.

By digitising its content it will help volunteers (including our own) and researchers view them online so research can continue safely and securely.

https://help-and-advice.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk/users/51773165-albert-wm-gosnall

Albert Wm Gosnall ← Help & Advice | Give us feedback | British Newspaper Archive My feedback Grays & Tilbury Gazette now known as the Thurrock Gazette 139 votes Vote Sign in prestine Your name Your email address (thinking…) Password Sign in with: Forgot password? Create a password I agree to the...

17/11/2020

For our final video, Katie from Grays Fire Station tells us about our new kit that was brought in last year.

16/11/2020

Extra precautions need to be taken when our firefighters attend incidents where chemicals or dangerous gasses are or may be present. In this clip Roger talks about our gas tight suits.

15/11/2020

Moving on again and the uniforms will become more familiar to you. Roger explains how they differ and how technology has advanced.

14/11/2020

Here is our third clip about uniforms through the years and our second focusing on WW2, specifically the NFS.

Take a look to find out more.

13/11/2020

In today's video Roger will be some of the fire-related uniforms worn during the second World War.

Front line roles weren't just limited to that of Fireman, plus women were also able to play their part.

Watch Roger in action to find out more.

Friday the 13th is often thought of as bad luck in this country. Make sure bad luck doesn't strike in your home by check...
13/11/2020
Home Safety Advice

Friday the 13th is often thought of as bad luck in this country. Make sure bad luck doesn't strike in your home by checking your smoke alarm(s) manually (setting it off when cooking sausages doesn't count!) every month. ☝

For more information please go online or call 0800 303 0088 - we may be in lockdown but we can, and will, still help you.

https://www.essex-fire.gov.uk/Home_Fire_Safety/Home_Safety_Advice/

Knowing how to reduce the risk of fire in your home is an important part of living safe and well. You can find lots of useful information about the common causes of fire in the home and what you can do to prevent them in the links above.

12/11/2020

Over the coming days we will be talking about the progression of the uniforms firemen/firefighters have worn since Victorian times.

In this first clip, Roger is discussing the kind of uniform a fireman would have worn during the Victorian period.

Our amazing team of volunteers carried out research to discover the lives of those Essex firemen who died during the fir...
11/11/2020
Museum Articles

Our amazing team of volunteers carried out research to discover the lives of those Essex firemen who died during the first world war. A short biography of each person can be found via the link below.

They shall not be forgotten.

https://www.essex-fire.gov.uk/Fire_Museum/Museum_Articles/

The Essex Fire Museum gives visitors the opportunity to take a fascinating look at the history of the Fire Service here in Essex.

They mingle not with their laughing comrades again;They sit no more at familiar tables of home;They have no lot in our l...
11/11/2020

They mingle not with their laughing comrades again;
They sit no more at familiar tables of home;
They have no lot in our labour of the day-time;
They sleep beyond England's foam.

- For the Fallen, by Robert Lawrence Binyon

Here is another example of a piece of history kept at the Essex Fire Museum that may not be directly related but is cert...
10/11/2020

Here is another example of a piece of history kept at the Essex Fire Museum that may not be directly related but is certainly relevant to the time period in question, in this case WWII.

What are your thoughts on one person's rationing allocation? Do you think you could manage well with these amounts?

It certainly helps us understand why people were encouraged to grow their own food and also why many kept chickens.

This item is part of our display and, though not fire service related, it adds to the authenticity of the scene created ...
10/11/2020

This item is part of our display and, though not fire service related, it adds to the authenticity of the scene created at our museum.

Has anyone else noticed it when they visited? Can you imagine living during a time when people were worried about electricity?

We're at the museum today (keeping our distance of course) to do some filming about uniforms throughthe ages, so keep an...
09/11/2020

We're at the museum today (keeping our distance of course) to do some filming about uniforms throughthe ages, so keep an eye on this page to find out how they have changed.

Address

Essex Fire Museum, Grays Fire Station, Hogg Lane
Grays
RM175

Telephone

+441375379167

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There are no specific opening times. The Museum is located on an operational fire station and therefore visits are by prior arrangement only. Please contact Roger to make an appointment.

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Comments

Did Pitsea ever have it's own fire brigade. I know that Vange did but on a page someone said the stone faced building on the left in Howards Crescent Pitsea was once the Fire Station. Could you confirm it with dates please
I invite you to join a closed group focused on Salvage Corps and Fire Patrols. So if you have an interest in this rather forgotten part of the fire service please ask to join, you would be most welcome. https://www.facebook.com/groups/922718937806597/
I am looking for my father's record as he was in the fire brigade in WW2. I have asked the Museum to look but they couldnt find him. his name is Frederick Arthur Price was born 1913. i have a picture of him and the badge on his cap looks like a fire brigade badge. im not sure if he was a regular or AFS. Can anyone help me. As far as i know he was based at Grays.
Dear Sir or Madam, I have written to you today to ask if you would be interested in becoming involved in an anniversary celebration of the 80th year of the German's bombing the Shell Haven Refinery in 1940. I have already asked Corringham Fire Station and they have declined the use of their building or car park, so I am still trying to find someone who would oblige an open-air scenery with the Corringham and Stanford-le-Hope area and I just want to know if you have anyone available to kind of recreate the scene or explain to people what a firefighter would do in those conditions. I have asked London Gateway as they now own the Shell Haven site and as Thurrock Council have already said that they will only allow 30 people in an open-air situation, I was hoping that a car park could be found so that you could provide a vehicle or equipment to show and possibly a speaker. Would someone be able to contact me by any chance? Regards, Ms Lisa Sargent. [email protected] The date I am looking at is 6th September 2020 which is a Sunday.
Hi , when will the museum be open again ? Thanks
have you auxiliary or national fire service cork helmet and jacket size 38 40 for reenactor York
Some photo`s taken at Chelmsford during the early years of WW2
Does anybody remember my father, Alf Norman. NFS WW2
We have identified these machines as 'Standard Gwynne Trailer Fire Pumps'. But can anybody tell us where this photo was taken and in what year. It has been suggested that it's in Laindon, Essex, however we are not totally convinced. We would love to know the answer.
Don't forget... Free Tickets for Serving and Retired Servicemen and their families...(you must reserve a ticket at the link below) Warwick Student Cinema Next week (28th April 11:00AM) we screen one of Wills best and Indeed rarest films, Where's That Fire? Where's That Fire? We will be screening from the only 35mm print found and restored by the BBC in 1975.. Tickets now on sale, (free to serving or retired fire officers) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GOer16PjJ-s visit www.buggleskelly.co.uk for tickets
Very interesting experience for kids and adults
WALTON OLD FIRE STATION DEMOLITION PLANS At a TDC Cabinet Meeting on 14 December local Councillors decided to delay plans to demolish the Old Fire Station Buildings in Mill Lane, Walton. They were responding to a petition recently handed in to the Council signed by more than 750 Walton residents. TDC are appealing to local entrepreneurs and community groups to come forward with plans on how to use the buildings, within 3 months or demolition plans will proceed. One of the buildings was a public loo until closed down earlier this year as part of the public convenience strategy to save money. The cost per loo saved according to the Council's own figures is £10,000 per annum, which could be covered if effort is put in to inviting local entrepreneurs to use the buildings and under a leasehold arrangement, provide an income from a redundant asset. Three people came forward as a result of the campaign to stop the demolition of the buildings. From 1908 the upstairs rooms were the meeting place of the Walton on the Naze Sailing Club until it morphed into the Walton & Frinton Yacht Club in 1920 when it moved to its present site at the end of Mill Lane. Anna Brooke, Vice Commodore recently informed club members that the upstairs rooms were the meeting place for the Walton on Naze Sailing Club from 1908. The members sailed from the windmill quay at the other end of Mill Lane. In 1919, following the War, they had to renegotiate the use of the quay. The offer of the freehold of the whole mill site led to the formation of both the Walton & Frinton Yacht Trust and Yacht Club in 1920. Officers and members of the Yacht Club have written to express their support for the campaign to prevent the buildings being demolished. They recognise as do many other locals the architectural and historic interest and significance of these delightful buildings. They have a distinctive character with a high arched pitch roof and tall Dutch gable front. They were built in the late 19th century as a Fire Station and housed a horse drawn appliance crewed by volunteers from the local community. The buildings are within the Walton Town conservation area which includes very significant buildings. A few hundred metres to the North is one of the few remaining Martello Towers grade 2 listed built circa 1812 as part of the Napoleonic defence system along the East coast. A few hundred metres to the South lies All Saints Parish church grade 2 listed built circa 1873. The old fire station is almost adjacent to Walton Mere which served as the mill pond for the old water powered corn mill, situated a few hundred metres to the North East with the site currently occupied by Halls boat yard. A few metres from the building is the old Town Hall a magnificent building when it was built circa 1900. According to Tendring District Council Conservation Area guidance, conservation areas are defined as areas of special architectural or historic interest, the character or appearance of which it is desirable to preserve or enhance. The current legislation governing conservation areas is Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990 (Section 69 and 70), and this limits any proposed developments within the area. The Town and Country Planning (General Permitted Development) (England) Order 2015 provides a direction under either article 4(1) or 4(2) of the order may be made by the district or county planning authority in relation to a conservation area to prevent development harmful to a heritage building. but only by the district/borough council in other cases. The Secretary of State may also make a direction. Steven Walker, organiser of the campaign to save the Old Fire Station buildings said: “I am pleased to see that Councillors have recognised the level of support for the campaign to save these lovely old buildings which are part and parcel of Walton’s unique Heritage and History. There is now a chance to preserve and refurbish these buildings in the heart of the Walton Conservation Area and put them to good use instead of allowing them to rot away and have to be demolished. I appeal to any local people, entrepreneur's or community groups to contact TDC and come forward with viable plans. TDC also needs to play its part in advertising this unique opportunity to a much wider audience in Tendring.”