THOUSANDS of residents were given an intriguing insight into what it was like to be a firefighter or a police officer at the annual Bromsgrove Blue Light Centre open day.
Among the attractions were the chance to have a ride in a fire engine, see a chip pan fire flare up and be extinguished and enter a smoke filled inflatable house.
There was also an impressive car crash rescue which saw Bromsgrove firefighters remove the roof of a car before a patient – played by a member of the Young Firefighters Association – was lifted onto a spinal board. She was then carried off by trainee paramedics from Worcester University.
Members of West Mercia Police’s road policing unit and armed response unit were there speaking to visitors, as were representatives from the West Midlands Search and Rescue charity.
Mascots Peeler from the police, Welephant from the fire service and Mac the Bear from the Midlands Air Ambulance also delighted youngsters, along with a bouncy slide and fairground ride.
There were stalls from other organisations, including Bromsgrove District Housing Trust (bdht) and the Hall Green Greyhound Rescue.
Charlotte and Craig Saving Hearts Foundation also had a stall and Robert Underwood from the charity gave demonstrations of how to perform CPR and show how defibrillators work. Residents young and old were also able to have a go themselves under his instruction.
He spoke about the importance of everyone knowing vital life-saving skills so they could be used when they were needed.
Phil Berry, the Bromsgrove Fire Station Commander, said: “It has exceeded all our expectations.
“We have had excellent support from the all the emergency services – West Mercia Police and West Midlands Ambulance Service – and other organisations.
“It has also been a fantastic way of raising funds for local charities,” he added.
Sgt Richard Field from Bromsgrove Police said there was a great partnership between the force, the fire service and the ambulance service.
“It’s fantastic to see thousands of people come down and get an insight into the blue light services.
“This site is unique in Worcestershire and it is great to be able to open our doors and show the public what we do.
“Hundreds of children have enjoyed a variety of activities at what was a wonderful family-orientated event.”
Anyone wanting to contact the Charlotte and Craig Saving Hearts Foundation charity to find out more about the courses they run can call 07794 637073.