Honor to the post for firefighter Paul after 40 years of custody

Ashbourne Fire Station Watch Director Paul Holmes was honored for 40 years of dedicated service as a firefighter.

Mr Holmes, an Ashbourne businessman and committed firefighter, received a letter of thanks last week from the Deputy Fire Chief of Derbyshire Fire and Rescue at Park Road station with all his colleagues congratulating him.

The former rugby player, who runs a manufacturing company on the airfield industrial estate, led the preserved Ashbourne team for more than 20 years after joining the fire service at the age of 19 years old, while working at Sturston Road.

He rose through the ranks to become the station officer in charge, a role he has held since 1998, leading a team of successful firefighters, all based in Ashbourne.

In 2018 he received an award recognizing his 20 years of leadership, but that honor was quickly overcome when his year ended when he was invited to stage a Shrovetide Ball on Ash Wednesday 2019.

Speaking in 2018, Paul explained why he still loves his job. He said: “I really appreciate it. I get a huge buzz about it. I get the excitement of the screams as we continue.

“To be honest it’s really a little cheesy, but you get a tremendous sense of satisfaction when you help someone.

“It doesn’t always work, and it’s a little hard sometimes, but most of the time it’s very, very rewarding to go out and help someone and get them out of a mess.”

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