04 February 2015 by Graham Ellicott,

As a West Ham fan of over 50 years standing I sat up the other night hoping for some incoming transfers to provide cover at centre half plus the likelihood of a new striker and just possibly a holding midfielder. As it turned out there were no signings at all allegedly in part due to a lack of co-operation from other clubs. In view of this I was wondering why I’d wasted all of the time associated with this matter. And then I saw the similarity with the fire sector where on many occasions the inability of organisations to co-operate has meant that the greater good has suffered and a lot of time has been frittered away. My mind then wandered across to the possibility of a transfer window for the fire sector and who would we like to sign – below I give you my abstract thoughts ...

Dante

At centre half how about Dante Alighieri (no he’s not from Lazio or Juventus!) but rather he’s the guy from Inferno (part of the Divine Comedy) and his influence in the dressing room could be great as anybody that can find their way through hell should have no problem with the fire sector and indeed his knowledge of fire systems should be immense. Also he’s associated with the immortal phrase  "Lasciate ogne speranza, voi ch'intrate"  (not the Roma equivalent of “I’m Forever Bowing Bubbles”!)  which I now know translates into  "Abandon all hope, ye who enter here" – I’m sure I’ve seen this chiselled into the wall outside of most of the fire meetings that I’ve participated in over the last decade or so – if only my Latin had been better all those years ago I could have saved a lot of time...

Moving on to a striker for the fire world somebody that can bang in the goals is sorely needed – a single minded individual who can rise above the political quagmire and drive home that ball. Looking around I don’t see any possibilities here currently  in the real world and thus perhaps we should head for Melchester and sign up Roy Race – that’s right Roy of the Rovers!  Melchester didn’t suffer mid table obscurity and life was always exciting for their fans – we certainly need some extra colour and verve in the fire world and some new blood could bring this even if we have to use artistic licence to sign it up!

For anybody that has ever dealt with a Government Department then they’ll know that they’re the best place to find a holding midfielder – some of the stuff that we talk to them about now has been ongoing for years and their ability to hold the ball and then kick it into the long grass has to be seen to be believed!  This means that serious problems that require a remedy never get dealt with – so much so that the European Government equivalent of UEFA sometimes has to get involved to help find the ball!

But what about outgoing transfers and the reasoning behind them? Well apart from the long overdue departure of myself from the this fascinating game we call the fire sector – in my opinion there’s a whole load of people that would be better off hanging up their boots or heading for the lower leagues. But to go further could be libellous …

And for those of you that want to enter the fire sector you might want to remember Dante’s phrase namely "Lasciate ogne speranza, voi ch'intrate"  before you consider your options prior to the opening of the next Transfer Window!