Firefighters scoop major national award

Green Watch members are pictured at the awards presentation in London.
Green Watch members are pictured at the awards presentation in London.

A team of firefighters from Eastbourne who raised more than £15,000 for charity have won a national award for their efforts.

The Blazing Saddles were presented with the Spirit of Fire Award in London on Friday night.

Previously that day organisers Bob Newton and Matt Harrison were at a reception at No 10 Downing Street.

The team, made up of members of Green Watch at Eastbourne Fire Station in Whitley Road, did a 1,000 mile charity scooter ride around the British Isles over four days in May.

They also held a community open day at the station attended by hundreds of people and a fund raising auction.

In total they raised £16,370 for Clic Sargent, which looks after children and young people with cancer or leukaemia, and the Firefighter’s Charity, which provides pioneering treatment and services for fire service personnel in need.

Green watch manager Bob Newton, who organised the event with firefighter Matt Harrison, said the team had a great time at the awards ceremony and were delighted to win.

“We were pleased to be shortlisted in the first place,” said Bob, “and so pleased to win. The team had such a great time. It was brilliant. It was a wonderful end to 18 months of fundraising.

“Green Watch now looks forward to our next fund raising challenge.”

The team won the Best Team Supporter Award 2012 in the Spirit of Fire Awards and were presented with it by Susan Pyper, the Lord Lieutenant of West Sussex.

Judges said the team had given exceptional support and outstanding dedication to the Fire Fighters Charity in the past 12 months

The event was hosted by news reader and broadcaster Nicholas Owen.

In the past firefighters from Eastbourne have raised thousands of pounds for charities.

The Spirit of Fire Awards is the most prestigious event in the fire and rescue services’ calendar, recognising acts of selfless sacrifice within the fire and rescue community and dedication to the Firefighter’s Charity.

Along with members of the fire service the awards also honour members of the public who have shown acts of bravery.