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Retained Firefighter Recruitment – There is no such thing as a ‘typical’ Firefighter


Following last year’s successful Retained Duty System (RDS)/On-call Firefighter recruitment campaign, North Wales Fire and Rescue Service is again calling on local communities to help support its work by asking people who live or work within 5 minutes of a fire station to take up the challenge and consider this rewarding career.

The fire and rescue service is looking to recruit RDS / On-call firefighters at a number of its 44 stations and is keen to hear from enthusiastic individuals interested in working as firefighters at their local station.

The Service is also asking local employers if they can support their community by talking to their staff about the role of a RDS/On-call Firefighter, and if appropriate, releasing their staff from work, within pre-agreed days and times, to respond to emergency calls.

RDS/On-call Firefighters provide essential and rewarding  fire and emergency cover for their communities 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.   There is no such thing as a ‘typical firefighter’ -  our firefighters represent a diverse range of people, including builders, administrators, shopkeepers, nurses, factory workers, self-employed professionals and stay at home parents . They are all trained to an equally high standard to provide vital on-call fire and emergency cover.  Some firefighters provide cover from home, others from work and some from both and this can be over varying times of the day through the week and weekends.

Last year’s recruitment campaign was so successful that some fire stations now have a holding list of people waiting to fill future vacancies - however, there are still some stations that have opportunities for recruitment and are looking for new team members. 

The Service is therefore keen to hear from enthusiastic individuals who live or work within 5 minutes of a fire station in North Wales, particularly the rural fire stations, who would be interested and available to work as an RDS/On-call Firefighter.   

Assistant Chief Fire Officer Gary Brandrick explained:  “We’re asking people across the region to consider – could you fill these boots? 

“RDS/On-call Firefighters are fully trained, highly skilled and highly valued individuals who save lives and property from fire and other emergency situations.  They provide expertise at road, rail and aircraft accidents, chemical spillages, flooding, forest, heathland and mountain fires and agricultural accidents. 

“The opportunity is now available for those interested in the role to register their details on our website for when vacancies become available at their local station. 

“If your local station is fully staffed at the time of your registration, your details will be put on a waiting list for when vacancies do become available.  This will allow us to take the opportunity to undertake elements such as the on line application, assessment and submission of availability grids to shorten the process once vacancies become available.

“If your local station is recruiting you will be contacted. 

“We are looking for people who are enthusiastic, physically fit and who can demonstrate initiative, commitment and dedication – we want our workforce to represent the diverse communities that we serve, and to support this where needed, positive action events will be in place to help those currently under represented within the role.

 “We provide close-knit, highly trained teams working with modern, hi-tech equipment. RDS/On Call Firefighters also take part in the fire prevention work we carry out to prevent fires happening in our community.”

The Fire and Rescue Service offers excellent opportunities for development and progression into leadership roles within the service meaning that joining as an RDS/on call firefighter can just be the start.

Please visit to find out more about the role and register your interest in becoming an RDS / On Call Firefighter.

Open Evenings will be scheduled at local fire stations later in the year.

If you require more information please contact North Wales Fire and Rescue Service on 01745 535250 or

Please take a look at our videos promoting RDS Recruitment available on YouTube here and here.

Applicants must be at least 18 years of age. They must possess a good standard of physical fitness and have the ability to pass aptitude tests. In addition to their monthly retaining fees, payments are made for turnouts, attendance and drill nights.

Many employers are aware of the essential role that retained fire and rescue service personnel carry out within their local communities and many release staff to carry out firefighting and other emergency duties.

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