FIREFIGHTERS and staff from Hereford & Worcester Fire and Rescue Service (HWFRS) have been honoured at a ceremony at the Guild Hall in Worcester.

During the evening, medals were presented by David Blakey CBE, Deputy Lieutenant of Worcestershire, as the Queen’s representative, and also by Chief Fire Officer Mark Yates and Councillor Derek W Prodger MBE, chairman of Hereford & Worcester Fire and Rescue Authority.

The High Sheriff of Worcestershire, Mrs Penelope Lewis, also attended the ceremony to present the High Sheriff’s Award, while Grant Wills, group commander with HWFRS, acted as master of ceremonies.

Long service and good conduct medals for 20 years’ service were the first of the evening to be awarded and Deputy Lieutenant David Blakey CBE presented these to two firefighters and three watch commanders. This included firefighter Christopher Verney based at Redditch.

Young Firefighter Jack Partridge, aged 15, who attends the Redditch branch of the Young Firefighters Association, was presented with the High Sheriff’s Award after being chosen as this year’s top Young Firefighter within Herefordshire and Worcestershire.

Chief Fire Officer Mark Yates said: “We hold a formal awards evening in both Worcestershire and Herefordshire each year and it gives me great pleasure to celebrate the efforts and achievements of our staff in this way.

“I am proud to lead a service with such dedicated fire crews and support staff and I’d like to pass on my congratulations to all those who received awards and long service medals.

“I would also like to thank their families, whose support and understanding makes such a difference, but so often goes unnoticed.”

He also personally congratulated Young Firefighter Jack Partridge who has become a highly valued member of the Redditch branch of the Young Firefighters Association.