A NEW firefighter has been recognised for his determination and hard work as the very first retained firefighter to be named best new recruit.

Drew Hall, who has now finished his initial training to become a retained firefighter at Prudhoe Fire Station, is the first recipient of the award, presented to him by deputy chief fire officer Mark McCarty.

Drew has recently finished his training to become a retained firefighter, and along with the others who passed their training alongside him he will now begin a two-year development programme with Northumberland Fire and Rescue Service.

While best new recruit awards have previously been awarded to whole time firefighters, the service has recently extended the award to those becoming retained firefighters.

The winner was chosen based on instructors’ feedback as well as various assessments which trainees are required to go through. The criteria they looked at included:

l Most improved

l Motivation

l Discipline

l Respect

l Good team player

l Working well under pressure

Northumberland Fire and Rescue Service tends to run two training courses per year for new firefighters joining the service, which involves two weeks initial training as well as a two week breathing apparatus training course.

Northumberland Fire and Rescue Service group manager Lee Buckingham said: “All of the recruits do really well to get through it but this award is recognising someone that has gone that little bit further.”