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History

GO TO DATE: 1913 | 1934 | 1946 | 1954 | 1980 | 2000 | 2009 |

1865
Prior to 1865 there was no Fire Brigade as such in Gibraltar, fire fighting being carried out by the Military, Fire engines were stationed at strategic points in Gibraltar. In 1865 the Sanitary Order in Council set up the Sanitary Commissioners placing upon them the responsibility of; "the prevention and extinction of fires". The Order in Council also authorised the Governor to make from time to time, Rules and Regulations for the extinction and prevention of fires.
1893
Records indicate telephone
was in use at this time.
1906
In 1906 Electric lights were first installed in the fire station.
1913
Suggestion made to transfer the staffing of the brigade by the police as Military intended to withdraw troops for other duties. Cost of scheme with 40 policemen would be £428 per annum. alternative proposal made by Sgt Robinson of Fire Brigade to staff the brigade with civilian craftsmen from Sanitary Commissioners Workshops Ragged Staff and provide a station opposite.
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1934
New Engine and Pump purchased and proposals made for new fire station to be built at Victoria Battery (site of present CFB H.Q.) at this time apart from a 30 foot extension ladder there was also a wheeled escape which had to be manhandled to wherever it was required.
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1937-1938
The new fire station at alameda was completed and staffed by 1 Sargent and 24 Firemen. The Superintendent Fire Brigade was the Garrison adjutant.

1940
Captain A W Beevers, the first Professional Fire Officer to Serve in Gibraltar, was brought out to re-organise the service and place it on a war footing. In consequence the Council's professional brigade was augmented by No. 4 Overseas Fire Brigade, complete with its own fire engines and equipment. This was further increased by the arrival of more men and appliances together with modern equipment.

GOTO 1954 | 1980 | 2000
1946
In October commensurate with the run down of Military personnel the first 12 civilian recruits were signed on and trained as firemen for service with the War Department pending transfer to the City Council. In December 1946 the first Civilian Firemen ever to be employed in Gibraltar attended their first fire.
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click image to view full size 1948
Captain W. H. Keith Hoare relinquished Military Duties and was appointed as the first Gibraltarian civilian Fire Chief of Gibraltar. He was a member of the Order of St. John and served from 1st January 1948 until the 30 June 1973 as the Chief Fire Officer.
To see photos of C.F.O Hoare during his service with the Brigade click on the link below:
W.H. Keith Hoare photos
1949
The Brigade consisted of two watches (Red & Blue) working on a 72 hr week and each watch was commanded by a Station Officer both of whom were UK expatriates. Eventually the services of one of these Officers was dispensed with, the strength of the brigade increased and two local men promoted to Sub/Officer rank to command the watches.
1954
Brigade split into 3 watches, Red, White and Blue and 1 more sub/Officer promoted. Working hours were reduced to 60 hours per week and later to 56 hours. The day shift working from 8 am to 5 pm (9 hours). The average turn out per year by the Brigade to fire calls and special services was approximately 300. The brigade's equipment was gradually replaced by better and more modern engines and appliances. click image to view full size
GOTO 1980 | 2000
1973
Harold E Smith new Chief fire Officer arrived on replacement for Captain Keith Hoare who retired.

1974
For the first time in the brigade history a local member, Mr Leslie Edmonds became a Graduate of the Institute of Fire Engineers.

1976
With the introduction of the City Fire Brigade and Fire Services Ordinance (now act) in this year the brigade standard improved both technically and practically with the aim of all officers receiving training at the Fire Service Technical College in the United Kingdom. The Fire Prevention department under the command of the Deputy Chief Fire Officer over the years steadily developed into an efficient working machine, as a result of which fire survey inspections of most: Government buildings, offices, schools, hospitals, commercial garages and petroleum installations have been carried out and the necessary recommendations made. 1976 was the year in which the City Fire Brigade adopted the current Cap Badge modelled on the UK Fire Services and said to derive from the Eight Pointed Star or Maltese Cross.
1980
Mr Leslie W Edmonds Q.F.S.M. took over command from H E Smith as Chief Fire Officer. a new era for the brigade started, with greater emphasis being placed on The Wide Field of emergency Services such as Cliff/Mountain Rescues etc. Underwater Divers teams were later introduced and a large variety of up to date rescue equipment obtained. He is the first Gibraltarian to have been awarded the Queen's Fire Service Medal on the 17th June 1997.
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1988
Initial steps are made toward establishing a marine section to tackle fire at sea.

1990
The Gibraltar Philatelic Bureau issued a set of four stamps to commemorate the 125th anniversary of the Fire Service in Gibraltar. The 4p value depicted two Victorian firemen, the 44p a modern fireman wearing Breathing apparatus, the 20p stamp a Dennis 1940's appliance, and the 42p showed a Range Rover 6 x 4 wheeled pump ladder appliance. The stamps were designed by a serving officer Dennis Gonzalez.
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click image to view full size 2000
Louis Casciaro took over as Chief Fire Officer from Leslie Edmonds. He joined the service in 1979. He was promoted to Divisional Officer Operations and Training in 1995. In 1999 he was awarded a BSc from South Bank University. He is also a member of the I.F.E.
click image to view full size 2009
In June 2009 Guillermo Mauro was promoted to the rank of Chief Fire Officer in succession to Louis Casciaro, on his retirement. Mr Mauro had been temporarily promoted as Acting Chief Fire Officer since 17 June 2008. Mr Mauro joined the City Fire Brigade as a fireman in 1980, at the age of 20 and promoted through the ranks to the post of Deputy Chief Fire Officer, which he took up on May 1 2001. He has been in the Fire Service for over 29 years and in 1991 was the first Gibraltar fire officer to attain Corporate Membership of the Institution of Fire Engineers in the United Kingdom. He is a Fellow of the Chartered Management Institute.
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