FIRESA Council’s current Chairman, James Jones, is standing down after two years in post at the helm of FIRESA Council, having guided us through a busy and fruitful period with a heady mix of experience, enthusiasm and sheer hard work. All of us at the FIA thank him for enormously and wish him all the best as he departs from Council to focus on his own business over the coming years.

Following an internal election process, we’re delighted to announce that the new Chairman of FIRESA Council from this November is Bernie Higgins.

Previously a Principal Officer in the UK Fire and Rescue Sector, Bernie has been active in the Fire Sector for forty years and is able to bring sector specific knowledge and strong sector relationships as well as outstanding interpersonal and leadership skills to the position. He has been an active member on Council for over two years, contributing at meetings and delivering on his role as Head of our Technology and R&D Workstream.

Bernie says ‘I will continue to build on the excellent work carried out by my predecessors. We have made great strides as a Council over the last several years but have seen some of this important work suffer some setbacks, for example on centralised equipment appraisal and testing. As Chairman, I will lead our efforts to ensure that collaboration within the sector is improved to the benefit of both the Services and the suppliers.’

He continues ‘the coming years will see more change for our industry as the outcomes from the Grenfell enquiry are delivered. We also, of course, have the challenges of Brexit and both of these will bring opportunities as well as risks for our businesses. This will be a watershed period for the fire sector as a whole.’