Firefighter Brian awarded BEM in New Year’s honours list

Brian Walsingham of Corby Glen has a BEM in the New Year's honours list EMN-141229-155912009
Brian Walsingham of Corby Glen has a BEM in the New Year's honours list EMN-141229-155912009

A retained firefighter from Corby Glen has been awarded a British Empire Medal (BEM) for his services to the community.

Brian Ernest John Walsingham, aged 67, was nominated for the award after having carried out nearly 50 years of service for Corby Glen Fire Station.

Amongst his many current roles, including being a farmer, builder and undertaker, Brian has dedicated years of voluntary work to the station offering 24 hour support,

Brian said: “It has kept me young over the years, being able to jump out of bed at my age!”

Brian joined the local brigade in 1965, when he was just 18-years-old, after a growing fascination for the fire engines.

This year will be his 50th year at the station, although he says it will definitely be his last.

He said: “I will be sad to go, but I have enjoyed it thoroughly. We have all worked as a team and I can’t take all the credit myself, I’ve had a lot of support and we always go out as a team.”

After hearing about his nomination, Brian said: “I’m very shocked, I didn’t know anyone had put my name forward. I’ll have to interrogate some people to find out who it was.”

Brian, who has been married to Jill for more than 44 years, recently became a qualified co-responder, which means he also responds to life threatening medical emergencies in the area, along with taking on 24 hour status for fire cover where he frequently has to leave his place of work and get up in the middle of the night to rush to fires and other emergencies.

Brian is keen to share his experiences, a major factor in influencing people to volunteer as retained firefighters in the area.

Alongside his volunteering at the station, Brian carries out a constant round of community work in the village including helping the parish council carry out maintenance work free of charge and helping the community in bad weather. He also helps with a number of events in the village, ensuring that it is a vibrant place to live with activities running throughout the week, as well as the weekend.