Farewell to Fenland fireman John

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A Wisbech-based fireman who also appeared in a top television drama has retired from the service after a 33 year career.

Watch Commander John Chelton, who lives in Chatteris, now plans to spend more time supporting his daughters Hannah, 21, and Rebecca, 17, in their equestrian ambitions.

They compete in eventing and showjumping respectively and he has paid tribute to them and his wife, Angela, for their support over the years.

He said: “They have had to put up with wanting to go places and not being able to and all the nights and weekends.

“And it’s the support you get after you have gone out to those horrid jobs and you come home and have to try and live a normal life. It can be difficult sometimes so the understanding and support I have had is incredible.”

For the past 10 years, John, 52, has been based at the Wisbech station, having worked at sites around the county since joining the brigade in 1984.

During his career, he also appeared in three episodes of the television drama London’s Burning, which depicted the lives of members of the London Fire Brigade.

John is now taking up a role as an enforcement officer for Peterborough City Council, where he will work alongside firefighters and police.

He said: “It is a rare thing to work for the Fire Service. I do think we are one of the most caring professions out there, along with nursing.

“We generally go out there and no matter what type of things we see, we will just help as much as we can and clean up as much as we possibly can and that is the bit I am going to miss.

“I have never come across so many caring people. I will miss everyone terribly.”

Station commander Brett Mills paid tribute to John’s dedicated service.

He said: “During his career, John has attended a wide variety of incidents and helped a lot of people in their time of need.

“His experience will be missed and I would like to wish him and his family all the best for the future.”