National Fire Chiefs Council Chair Mark Hardingham reports on the historic journey to Poland to deliver fire equipment to colleagues in Ukraine.
On a cold and beautifully sunny spring morning in March, I arrived at a fire station in Kent to witness the biggest ever UK Fire Service convoy of equipment and fire engines leave for Ukraine.
More than 100 people were on site preparing the fire engines, equipment, PPE and volunteers to start this historic journey to Poland, and then onto Ukraine. All of this to support our firefighter colleagues battling the flames and rescues in their local communities under Russian invasion.
There was a tangible feeling of pride and camaraderie as to what had been achieved in such a short amount of time and a keenness to get the journey underway. This was equally underpinned with the responsibility of the task in hand, and the impact of the shocking scenes we have seen unfold across Ukraine.