The Old Fire Station

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Thread Topic: The Old Fire Station
Topic Originator: Martyn Dolby
Post Date March 6, 2008 @ 7:22 PM
 The Old Fire Station
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 Old Fire Station/firemen
 The Old Fire Station/booklet
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Martyn Dolby
March 6, 2008 @ 7:22 PM Reply  |  Email  |  Print  |  Top

Hi Kate.Just found the site. Being born and bred in Stamford I too have many happy memories of growing up in the town.
One such memory was of the old fire station in the 50's when it was situated in Scotgate just about where the car park is now.
The huge doors of the garage that housed the fire engines were right up to the pavement and you got a great view of everything inside and of the engines as they roared out into Scotgate.
I lived fairly close by and on hearing the siren go off that alerted the firemen, I used to run down Scotgate and try and guess who would be the first fireman to arrive.
All the men had other jobs and they just 'dropped tools' and rushed to the fire station mostly on their bikes. It was very exciting to see them flying into the station with their bikes ending up in a pile in the yard.
There was Len Boyden, Ron Hodgett, Albert and Mick Exton, Joe Askew Dave Head' Norman Hilliard  and Colin Helstrip to name but a few.
When the fire was over all the men went back to work and carried on where they left off.
Kate:  O yes Martyn.  I can remember Joe Askew arriving preparing for the fire.  I also remember when they used to have a practice run in the meadows.  Thanks for such an interesting memory.  Anyone else have memories of the Old Fire Station.  Must be some memories out there.  Can we have a list of all the firefighters? (sorry, firemen).  Is there a list of them anywhere?  Was it passed on from father to son?  Any firemen  out there who were at the Scotgate Station?  It used to be a right pickle over a Bank holiday, as the road in front was the actual A1.  So getting the fire engine out became quite a feat!

March 16, 2008 @ 8:08 PM Reply  |  Email  |  Print  |  Top

Hi Martyn. I remember the old fire station as I used to go to St John's School which was almost next door, and then when I went to the Bluecoat School would pass it 4 times a day. I tend to remember the fire engines rather than the firemen, the main appliance being a Commer, usually  in the left hand bay with an Austin and (I think) Bedford in the other 2 bays. Originally the building was previously Hayes and Sons Carriage Works up until the 1920s. Together with the adjoining "Star and Garter" and some cottages situated in a courtyard near the old "Scotgate" inn it was demolished in the 1960s.  
Incidentally, Martyn, I vaguely remember you from the Bluecoat, although you were a year or two ahead of me. Didn't you live in Eight Acres

Kate: Thanks very much for that Roger.  I am sure the details of the appliances will refresh memories of peering through the windows and seeing those engines standing in there at the ready.  Anyone else remember The Old Fire Station?

Andy Matthews
March 17, 2008 @ 12:32 AM Reply  |  Email  |  Print  |  Top

Hi Kate, I borrowsed a book from Stamford Library last year which i believe was called"Stamford Fire Brigade - 1888 to 1988".  It is almost like a pamphlet but it had lots of interesting history of the Stamford Brigade since it began with quite a few old pictures.  It certainly had photographs of the Fire Station in Scotgate and the original Station on East Street which is now the home of the St John's Ambulance.  I remember reading that they moved from Scotgate to their current home at Radcliffe Road in 1965.
The book also lists all the firemen that were enlisted at Stamford from 1888 to 1988.  It also gave the year they joined and the year they left.  So yes. there is a list of all past firemen but its quite a long one. The book also gives a history of the large fires and incidents they attended through the years.  It is a very intersting read.
Kate:  Thanks very much for that Andy.  I will try to have a look at the list and see if there is anything I can add to the site for readers. I look forward to reading it and refreshing my memory of the firemen and the fires they tackled during the years.  Thanks again.

March 21, 2008 @ 12:32 AM Reply  |  Email  |  Print  |  Top

Hello Roger
Well you certainly have a good memory and yes I certainly did live in Eight Acres from 1948 to 1959 and I also went to St Johns and the Bluecoat School before moving on to the Exeter School.
No doubt our paths crossed on many occasions in the area of the Old Fire Station. Such happy days!!

March 25, 2008 @ 11:38 PM Reply  |  Email  |  Print  |  Top

Hi Martyn

I don't know why some things stick in the memory for 50 years and others don't! Another example : I can picture the old Scotgate fire station quite vividly, but the only thing I recall about Radcliffe Road f/s is the tower for hose drying, but I couldn't tell you if it was on the right or left of the building. I left Stamford over 30 yrs ago, although my parents were still here until 2002/3 and it's surprising the odd things I can remember which have long gone. I suppose you must have moved from Eight Acres when it was redeveloped.

April 2, 2008 @ 7:53 PM Reply  |  Email  |  Print  |  Top

just a point, for the real fire station aficionados, if you look on the front right hand side where the brickwork is adjoined to the callis stonework, it is in a recess, there is an original rainwater pipe still painted in fire engine red runs the whole way up
keep up the good stuff
Kate:  I like it.  I will definitely be looking for that next time I am past there.

Jim Hussey
September 26, 2010 @ 8:05 PM Reply  |  Email  |  Print  |  Top

There is a list of every Firefighter who served at Stamford`s three fire stations 1888 until the present day. It is updated on a regular basis. The list is on a series of boards kept at the current station on Radcliffe rd. Jim
Kate: Hi Jim.  I haven't got round to posting a Fireman's List yet.  Must look into this.

Jim Hussey
October 2, 2010 @ 3:22 PM Reply  |  Email  |  Print  |  Top

If you would like a full list 1888 to date I could do one for you, this will not however cover the wartime members as there is not a full list of these times. This is probably due to the fact that some of these people may have been conciencious objectors, and subject to white feathers etc.


Hi Jim.  That would be very useful and I am sure lots of people would enjoy looking at the list and remembering the names.  I borrowed that leaflet/book from the library this week.  Its got some very intersting stories in it, but I'm not sure how much of it I can copy out to the site.(ie.copyright).  I will be able to paraphrase some of it in due course.

Jim Hussey
October 4, 2010 @ 1:15 PM Reply  |  Email  |  Print  |  Top

The copywrite for Dave Glossop`s Book belongs to Stamford Fire Station. The book is no longer in print as it was only written for the 1888-1988 centenary celebrations of the Fire Service in Stamford. It was only a limited print run. I have access to one copy (signed by the author)if you would like to have a look at it.
Kate:  Jim I have a copy borrowed from the Library.  Haven't got around to reading it yet but had a look at the photos. Looks very interesting - how times have changed.

December 6, 2010 @ 1:29 PM Reply  |  Email  |  Print  |  Top

When I was a little girl and my father was a fireman, I went to the Christmas parties for children, which were held in the room above the firestation.  I remember the room had wooden floors and as there was also a bar, there was always a stale smell of beer that had been spilt on the wooden floor.  Years later when the new firestation was built the old building was used temporarily by the YMCA and that smell was still there. Also I remember whilst the YMCA used the building, wrestlers (Jack Bone, Alan Chiverton, Bob Rudkin are the ones I remember) would use the space on the ground floor for practice.

Tom Digby
May 21, 2012 @ 5:35 PM Reply  |  Email  |  Print  |  Top

Hi Martin, Are you any relation to Johnny Dolby? Used to referee football matches in the late 1940's?



See my post AMBULANCE CADETS 1949

barry hilliard
June 23, 2013 @ 8:16 AM Reply  |  Email  |  Print  |  Top

new to this site via my brother clive and richard can i add our fathers name on your list  on the old fire station his name was norman hilliard thanks
Kate:  Yes Barry have added your father's name.  Thanks for posting.

January 5, 2015 @ 2:02 PM Reply  |  Email  |  Print  |  Top

hi I'm new to this site. i was wondering if anyone could give me any history on the towns fire service which i know has served the town and surrounding areas with great pride and service   for many many years thank you tom

Hi Tom.  Hope you get some replies. Happy New Year. Kate

Janet Gibbons (nee Farman)
June 15, 2015 @ 2:06 PM Reply  |  Email  |  Print  |  Top

One thing sbout the old fire station I don't appear to see mentioned is the old  WW2 air raid siren which was used to let the voluntary firemen know they were wanted, way before such things as pagers were used. My Mum was a Londoner and lived through the blitz, and she hated the sound of the Fire station siren.
We lived not far from David Blades and I once saw him on his bike, in his pyjamas turning out for a fire call.Passing motorists used yo top and give the firemrn lifts if they could. How times have changed!

Richard Hilliard
October 1, 2017 @ 11:16 AM Reply  |  Email  |  Print  |  Top

Only just found this post. See my dads name mentioned. Always interested in snippets about dad as was only six when he died in road accident.

March 6, 2018 @ 9:04 AM Reply  |  Email  |  Print  |  Top

Hi Jim
Could you send me a list of firemen at Stamford Fire Station 1888 to 1990 as im thinking of writing a book about my time at the station.

Nigel Eastwood

Jim Hussey
April 7, 2018 @ 5:04 PM Reply  |  Email  |  Print  |  Top

Hi N.D. the boards are all still at the fire station.All up to date and well presented. Call at the station and have a look, you will see a hell of a lot of changes since the good old days!

Roger Partridge
April 23, 2018 @ 8:12 PM Reply  |  Email  |  Print  |  Top

Janet, I also remember hearing the air raid siren at the old fire station back in the 1950s/60s. seemed to happen quite frequently.

Betty Haddon
April 24, 2018 @ 12:40 PM Reply  |  Email  |  Print  |  Top

I recall hearing the siren,watching the firemen arrive and the engine set off - there were frequent chimney fires at the time. We needed them twice even though I remember the sweep coming regularly. The roar when the chimney caught was scary and exciting as a child, being rushed out and seeing flames coming out of the chimney top made the firemen heroes to us.
My grandfather, William Haddon, made the gates which were moved to the 'new' firestation, he worked for Hayes and the gates were originally the entrance to their yard.

Mike Laughton
June 19, 2018 @ 8:56 AM Reply  |  Email  |  Print  |  Top

I think most people alive today will only remember the fire station in Scotgate before the new one at the junction of Radcliffe Road and New Cross Road was built. But I believe the town's first proper fire station (about 100 years ago) was housed in the building on the corner of East Street and Newgates that later became the St John Ambulance Station
I have seen photos of the building when it was the Fire Station. I think one used to be on display in Stamford Museum.
How can a historic  town like Stamford no longer have a proper museum?

tom mytton
August 18, 2018 @ 5:23 PM Reply  |  Email  |  Print  |  Top

hi mike yes you are correct the original station was indeed where st john is now based i agree that the museum should be put back too much history has been lost in stamford all in the name of  progress

Jim Hussey
August 19, 2018 @ 10:32 AM Reply  |  Email  |  Print  |  Top

The East St. Fire Station was built in 1888. The downstairs windws were built like barn windows, this was if the Fire Brigade was not a success the building would be easily converted to "animal husbandry", so the building was not wasted.