West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service

Last updated

West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service
West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service logo.jpg
Operational area
Country England
County West Yorkshire
Agency overview
Established1974 (1974)
Employees961 (2016 frontline staff) [1]
Facilities and equipment
Stations 41
Engines 47
www.westyorksfire.gov.uk OOjs UI icon edit-ltr-progressive.svg

The West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service (WYFRS) is the county-wide, statutory emergency fire and rescue service for the metropolitan county of West Yorkshire, England. It is administered by a joint authority of 22 people who are appointed annually from the five metropolitan boroughs of West Yorkshire, known as the Fire and Rescue Authority.


West Yorkshire covers an area of approximately 800 square miles (2,100 km2) which includes remote moorland, rural villages, large towns and cities as well as Leeds Bradford International Airport. [2] The fire and rescue service's headquarters are located in Birkenshaw, Bradford. [3] There is also a large training centre at Birkenshaw used by other authorities besides West Yorkshire.

In 2006, the service was listed as being the fourth largest in England (behind London, the West Midlands and Greater Manchester fire services) with 1,600 wholetime firefighters and 199 retained. [4] It has 47 fire appliances based at 41 stations, sub divided into five districts; Bradford, Calderdale, Kirklees, Leeds and Wakefield. [5] [6]


The brigade was formed in 1974 when the unitary county of West Yorkshire was created and was an amalgamation of smaller brigades across the county. [7] These included the West Riding County Fire Service, Bradford City Fire Brigade, Dewsbury County Borough Fire Brigade, Halifax County Borough Fire Brigade, Huddersfield County Borough Fire, Leeds City Fire Brigade and Wakefield City Fire Brigade. [7] At its inception, the WYFRS had 52 stations across the five districts. [8]

The service's headquarters is at Oakroyd Hall in Birkenshaw; the hall is a grade II listed building that has housed the headquarters since 1964, when it was the headquarters for the West Riding Fire Service (WRFS). [9] [10] Previous to that, the WRFS headquarters was at Huddersfield, [11] though its training centre had moved to Birkenshaw in 1961. [12]

After a number of firefighter deaths at notable fires in the 1990s (Gillender street in Bow, East London [1991] and the Sun Valley poultry factory fire in Hereford [1993]), coupled with the publishing of the Fennell Report into the King's Cross fire of 1987, WYFRS developed an incident command policy that encompassed an at-incident dynamic risk assessment and an organisational structure assessment for major fires. This policy was driven forward by central government and after some refinement was adopted in 1999. [13]

In April 2014, the service's emergency call response centre was moved from the Birkenshaw site to a location in Leeds, which also subsequently became the call centre for the South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service (SYFRS), in the event of a control room failure at SYFRS control in Sheffield. [14]

Fire stations

Rover 200 being used for Fire training at Wetherby Fire Station in 2015. Rover 200 being used for training, Wetherby Fire Station (4th August 2015).JPG
Rover 200 being used for Fire training at Wetherby Fire Station in 2015.
Kirkstall Road fire station Fire Station, Kirkstall Road, Leeds - geograph.org.uk - 104658.jpg
Kirkstall Road fire station
Wetherby fire station Wetherby fire station 001.jpg
Wetherby fire station
Halifax fire station Halifax fire station - geograph.org.uk - 188151.jpg
Halifax fire station
Otley fire station Otley fire station - geograph.org.uk - 188176.jpg
Otley fire station

West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service operates 41 fire stations including the headquarters and training centre at Birkenshaw. [15]

Station NameStation NumberDistrictCrewedUnitsnotes
Bingley 41BradfordWholetime1 WrL, 1 WRU
Birkenshaw KirkleesOakroyd Hall houses the headquarters with additional training facilities located on the same site.
Bradford 40BradfordWholetime1 WrT, 1 CARP
Castleford 82WakefieldWholetime1 CARP
Cleckheaton 62KirkleesWholetime1 WrL, 1 TRU, 1 PM,
Cookridge 22LeedsWholetime1 WrT 1 PM with HVPU PODWYFRS plan to merge Cooksridge and Moortown fire stations on one site. [16]
Dewsbury 83KirkleesWholetime1 WrL, 1 WrT 1 PM +MDU,
Fairweather Green 42BradfordWholetime1 WrL
Featherstone 84WakefieldRetained1 WrL, 1 Command Unit Lite
Garforth 23LeedsDAY CREWING1 WrT
Halifax 64CalderdaleWholetime1 CARP
Holmfirth 66KirkleesRetained1 4x4 WrL, 1x WFU
Huddersfield 60KirkleesWholetime1 Wrt. 1 CARP
Hunslet 25LeedsWholetime1 WrL, 1 WrT. 2x PM bulk foam
Ilkley 45BradfordRetained1 WrL 1 X PWU
Illingworth 67CalderdaleWholetime1 WrL
Keighley 46BradfordWholetime1 WrL, 1 WFU, 1 Rwrl
Killingbeck 32LeedsWholetime1 WrL, 1 WrT
Leeds 20LeedsWholetime1 WrT, 1 WrL, 1 ALP, 1 Flood Respone Unit
Meltham 69KirkleesRetained1 WrL,
Mirfield 87KirkleesRetained1 WrL, 1PM + Hose Layer Unit
Moortown 26LeedsWholetime1 WrLWYFRS plan to merge Cooksridge and Moortown fire stations on one site. Outline permission to redevelop the site for housing was approved in June 2017. [17]
Morley 27LeedsWholetime1 WrL
Mytholmroyd 70CalderdaleRetained1 WrL,
Normanton 88WakefieldWholetime1 WrL
Odsal 47BradfordWholetime1 WrL 1 PM, 1 ISU POD, 1 ISU SUPPORT VAN
Ossett 89WakefieldWholetime1 WrL 1 Flood Response Unit,
Otley 48LeedsRetained1 WrL 1 PM + Hose Layer Unit
Pontefract 90WakefieldWholetime1 WrL, 1 CSUOpened in 2012 to replace the older Pontefract station with Knottingley fire station closing completely. [18]
Rastrick 61CalderdaleWholetime1 WrL, 1 WRU
Rawdon 50LeedsDay Crewed1 WrL
Rothwell 91LeedsDay Crewed1 WrL
Shipley 53BradfordWholetime1 WrLShipley fire station moved to a new site in May 2017 on Valley Road, closer to Bradford. The new station replaced the old Shipley fire station (located in Saltaire) and Idle fire station, which closed completely. [19]
Silsden 52BradfordRetained1 WrL
Skelmanthorpe 71KirkleesRetained1 WrL 1 Personal Welfare Unit
Slaithwaite 72KirkleesRetained1 RWRL 4x4
South Kirkby 92WakefieldDay Crewing /Close Call1 WrLReplaced South Elmsall fire station (wholetime) and Hemsworth fire station (retained) in 2015. [20] [21]
Stanningley 31LeedsWholetime1 WrL 1 HVP, 1 FRU, 1 FRU Support VanOpened in February 2003 to replace the two closed stations at Bramley and Pudsey. [22]
Todmorden 74CalderdaleDay crewed1 4X4 RP, 1 WFU + ARGO CAT
Wakefield 80WakefieldWholetime1 CARPTemporary 1 bay station until the new one is built
Wetherby 29LeedsDay crewed1 WrL

Wholetime consists of working two days, two nights and four days off. Day crewing is a day orientated shift pattern and close call is where the firefighter works a set number of hours annually, so the shift patterns are managed locally. purposes. Ranks of station manager and above can work a Flexi duty system, with the remainder of the staff being on a retained basis. [23] Wholetime two days plus two nights on, four days off 08:00-19:00hrs (Bingley, Bradford, Cleckheaton, Halifax, Illingworth, Fairweather Green, Shipley, Leeds, Wakefield, Huddersfield, Moortown, Cookridge, Dewsbury, Ossett, Odsal, Pontefract, Rastrick, Stanningley, Killingbeck) Day Crewed four days on, four days off 08:00-17:00 - Todmorden, Wetherby Day Crewing two days on, two days off, three days on, (0:800-17:00) 17:00-08:00 respond from home (Garforth, Morley, Rothwell, Rawdon) Day Crewed Close Call, two on, two off, three on (08:00-17:00) then respond from accommodation that is available (Castleford, Normanton and South Kirkby)

Station closures

Fire Station - Sherburn Road (geograph 4535305).jpg
Stanks fire station at Swarcliffe (closed 2015)
Gipton Fire Station - Gipton Approach - geograph.org.uk - 564076.jpg
Gipton fire station (closed 2015)
Killingbeck Fire Station - York Road (geograph 4332127).jpg
Killingbeck fire station (seen under construction) opened in 2015 to replace Stanks and Gipton

In recent years the service has sought to rationalise its stations. In 2013, Marsden fire station was closed, while in 2015 Gipton and Stanks fire stations in East Leeds were replaced with a single fire station between the two sites at Killingbeck. [24] Of the eight firefighters based at Marsden, three left the service, whilst five transferred to the retained station at Slaithwaite. The fire appliance from Marsden was moved as a cover fire engine at Huddersfield. [25] Haworth fire station, which was staffed by retained firefighters, was closed permanently in 2014. [26]

In the same year, Batley and Dewsbury's fire stations were merged into a single site in Dewsbury and Brighouse and Elland fire stations were also amalgamated into one fire station in Rastrick that is nearer to the M62 motorway. [27] the stations at Otley and Rawdon were due to be closed and replaced with a combined site located in the Menston area, but these plans were abandoned after a suitable site could not be found. [28] [29]

Notable incidents

See also

Related Research Articles

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