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Award reminds Alan's daughter of his bravery

Chief Officer John Bonney presents Alan Bannon's medal to Alan's daughter Abi Credit: Hampshire Fire and Rescue

Alan Bannon's family has issued a statement saying they are very proud of his achievements after he posthumously received an award for bravery.

They said "Alan was a much loved family man who always put others before himself. It was always his ambition to become a firefighter. He loved his job and those he served with on Red Watch, as well as those in the wider fire service family."

"Though this award cannot bring Alan back, it does go some way to recognising the risk that all firefighters put themselves at every day to protect us all. It is also something which will allow Abi to remember how brave her Daddy was."

Shirley Towers sacrifice remembered

Chief Officer John Bonney presents Alan Bannon's station number lapels to Alan's mother Margaret Credit: Hampshire Fire and Rescue

Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service say they have awarded posthumous medals to Jim Shears and Alan Bannon to recognise that they "put themselves in harm's way to ensure the safety of others".

Chief Officer John Bonney said "This award is to formally recognise their courage, dedication and service, and to remember the sacrifice they made."

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Shirley Towers firefighters awarded gallantry medals

Two firefighters who lost their lives fighting a fire in Shirley Towers in Southampton have been posthumously awarded gallantry medals.

Jim Shears from Poole in Dorset and Alan Bannon from Southampton died in April 2010.

Chief Officer John Bonney presents Alan Bannon's Meritorious Medal for Gallantry to Alan's daughter Abi Credit: Hampshire Fire and Rescue
Chief Officer John Bonney presents James Shears's station number lapels to James's father Ed Credit: Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service
Jim Shears and Alan Bannon Credit: Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service

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Fire Service "committed to learn from what happened at Shirley Towers."

John Bonney, Chief Officer of Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service said: " I have been committed to learn from what happened at Shirley Towers both for the families but also to protect my firefighters in the future.

The inquest has also heard how we have already made changes in equipment, training and procedures. But there are also national implications that arise from this fire and I am already making arrangements to ensure that the fire service as a whole benefits from the learning from this tragedy.

I cannot, guarantee to take my firefighters out of harms way at every incident. To make them totally safe on all occasions would mean that they could not do their job to protect and save the lives of others. Something that Jim and Alan did themselves at Shirley Towers."

Firefighters inquest: Fire Brigade Union statement

"These dedicated firefighters died in the line of duty and the inquest played a key role in establishing the facts of what happened. The biggest advances in firefighter safety have come from learning and applying the lessons of such tragedies.

"The Fire Brigades Union and Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service have worked together to agree 10 key recommendations. We will be raising those recommendations and our concerns with the fire minister to ensure lessons learned from tragedies like this are not lost or forgotten in the future."

Karl Horan, FBU member said:"To prevent a similar loss of life we call upon the Fire Minister and Sir Ken Knight, Chief Fire and Rescue Advisor, to ensure that the issues identified during this inquest are circulated to all UK Fire and Rescue Services and other relevant bodies.

FIrefighter inquest verdict: family and colleagues pay tribute

A coroner has recorded a misadventure with narrative verdict at the inquest into the deaths of two firefighters.

Alan Bannon, 38, and James Shears, 35, were killed after they were among the first to reach a huge blaze in a 15-storey building Shirley Towers on April 6 2010.

Here their family and colleagues pay tribute to them

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