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Newbury Fire Station's action and fun-packed open day

Sale of Sir Anthony McCoy memorabilia boosts charity fundraising

Jane Meredith

Jane Meredith


01635 886637

NEWBURY Fire Station’s open day on Saturday proved a huge, fun and action-packed success, raising £1,580 for charity.

A stream of 1,000 visitors poured into the Hawthorn Road station and watched mock  rescues  from the station’s drill tower, and simulated road traffic collisions, alongside dramatic demonstrations by the Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service’s hot oil display unit.

The highlight proved to be a charity auction, with memorabilia signed by local horseracing legend, Sir Anthony McCoy.

A signed photo of Sir Anthony after his 4,000th win, which fetched £80, was among some eight auction and 26 raffle prizes, including two golf outings for four people at West Berkshire Golf Club, in Chaddleworth and the Donnington Grove Country Club. 

Station commander Matt Frayne said it proved a brilliant day with fantastic weather.

“We sold every drink – about 11 or 12 cases of fizzy drinks and 300 burgers,” he said. “The ice creams sold out and the children’s face-painting was non-stop.

“It was a great success, due to the public that turned out.

“Without them we wouldn’t have been able to do it.”

Surrey Fire and Rescue Service provided a fascinating fire and rescue dog demonstration.

“The handler put some petrol on a cotton bud and hid it and the dog had to sniff it out,” said  Mr Frayne, who added that the dog proved  intent on the ‘find’ and was not distracted by the crowd. 

A mounted firefighter’s axe – presented to firefighters after 30 years service – and engraved ‘To commemorate Newbury Fire Station’s July 16 open day, 2016’, fetched £35.

“The mother who bought it came back and said her son wanted to donate £10,” said Mr Frayne.

The day was supported by Thames Valley Police, who took along the force’s armed response vehicle, and also South Central Ambulance Service, located next door to the fire station. There were ambulance vehicles on display and the ‘999 Ted’ character bear to entertain  the youngsters.

Mr Frayne also expressed his thanks to Newbury Town Council for the use of Shaw Road playing field to provide visitor parking throughout the day. 

Money raised from the charity auction will be donated to The Fire Fighters Charity and Children with Cancer UK.

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