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Firefighters in 7,000 metre pole challenge for charity

Firefighters ahead of their pole challenge Credit: Tom Savvides

A group of firefighters from Brighton & Hove are attempting to break the world record for pole dropping.

Green Watch from Hove Community Fire station are also raising money for the Fire Fighters Charity, as well as the Rocking Horse appeal.

The team are planning to climb and slide nearly 7,000 metres up and down a fire station pole that has been put in place at Brighton's Churchill Square between 9am and 5pm today. They want to grab back the record which they set in 2009.

The challenge for the East Sussex Fire & Rescue Service firefighters marks one of the last time the 13 members of Green Watch will be together. Next month one of the fire engines will be taken away from the Hove fire station and the team will be cut down to seven members.

"We have a change of establishment on station, as you know, at the end of March and we want to go out in style getting back our world record before we go our separate ways upholding our continued good work we undertake for charity.

"We have match funding in place, which enables individuals' donations to charities to be doubled, so would like to raise an enormous amount of money for the two fantastic charities.

"We want the public to turn out in their thousands to support us, cheer us on and donate whatever they can, as it is gonna be a great family day.

"Whilst it is important to keep fit for our jobs, we have definitely upped our training for the big event. Each day on duty we spend an hour coming down our fire pole on station and running back up the stairs."

– Darren Eaton, Firefighter

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Man rescued from fire at 17-storey block of flats

More than 60 firefighters were called to deal with the fire in Brighton Credit: Eddie Mitchell

A man has been rescued by firefighters after a fire broke out on the thirteenth floor of a 17-storey building in Brighton.

More than 60 firefighters and ten fire engines were called to Essex Place on Montague Street at 5.15pm yesterday. The whole building was evacuated - and the fire was brought under control by 8pm.

The authorities say everyone has been accounted for - and there are no reports of any injuries. Although the building was under guard by police officers over night for safety reasons.

Fire investigation officers from East Sussex Fire & Rescue Service are been back at the scene today to determine what caused the blaze.

Ten fire engines and specialist breathing apparatus were deployed to the scene
The fire started on the thirteenth floor

Public consultation results on cuts to fire service to be revealed

The results of a public consultation into possible cuts at East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service have been announced. Amongst the options, to save more than seven million pounds over five years, is reducing the number of fire engines in Brighton or losing full-time staff.

The findings will be discussed at a Fire Authority meeting next week.

We would like to thank those organisations and individuals who responded to our consultation. This is a difficult time and it is important that the Fire Authority is equipped with as much evidence as possible to have an informed debate before making a decision."

– Fire Authority Chairman Phil Howson

Lessons to be learnt from massive emergency exercise

Emergency services in Brighton were put to the test today. An explosion was staged at a disused army barracks to see how police, fire and ambulance crews would respond.

Around 200 volunteers took part with other incidents staged across Sussex.

Andy Dickenson reports and speaks to Insp Tony Lumb from Sussex Police and Mark Rist from East Sussex fire and Rescue.

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Fire at theatre believed to have been started accidentally

The Phoenix Theatre in Lewes was destroyed by a fire last night

The fire that destroyed the Phoenix Theatre & Studios in Lewes is believed to have been started accidentally by a wood burning stove on one of the upper floors, according to East Sussex Fire & Rescue Service.

Up to seventy firefighters tackled the blaze last night. Crews were called to the scene shortly after 6pm. They managed to stop the fire spreading to other neighbouring buildings. The fire was out by 9.30pm, but crews remained at the site until 6am this morning damping down the embers.

Adequate insurance is a must

The importance of having adequate insurance is being highlighted by East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service.

They say they have attended a number of properties recently without building or contents insurance.

Neal Robinson, Head of Community Risk Management at ESFRS said, "If there is a fire in your home, you risk losing everything. Even if the fire if contained to one area, smoke and water damage can have a huge impact.

"To know that you do not have insurance to help rebuild your lives makes it even tougher to face."

It is thought that in times of cutbacks, people may be tempted to not insure their property.

Fire crews scale back operation at care home

Smoke from the rooftop fire at Marlborough House care home in St Leonards

East Sussex Fire & Rescue Service have scaled down their operation at the scene of a fire at a care home in St Leonards-on-Sea.

At the height of the blaze at Marlborough House in Warrior Square more than fifty firefighters were involved in the operation, along with eleven fire engines, eight breathing apparatus, three aerial ladder platforms and other equipment.

The fire broke through to the roof - with smoke seen for miles

The building was evacuated at about 8.30am with around fifty people including 32 residents led to safety. Two had to be rescued form the building. Nearby properties were also evacuated. A fire investigation is underway.

Many of the roads near Warrior Square were closed off because of the fire
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