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Neil, Firefighter


My name is Neil Youngman and I’m a crew manager in the fire service.

Looking at the Ladybird books, do you think your job is like the one depicted in the book?

There’s a lot of similarities, but the biggest difference I see here is that it says fire man, that doesn’t really sort of allude to the fact of how diverse this job has become and what it is. We’re fire fighters now. It’s a job that everyone can do and it’s not a job solely for men. Which I think that’s probably the biggest difference we’ve got here.

What are the main differences between then and now?

I think the role’s expanded now. I think we do far more now, not just with the public but operationally we do a lot more now. We deal a lot with rescue work, with road traffic collisions, we do a lot of work in flood rescue as well, we do a lot of work working from heights, so the role’s expanded a great deal now.

What things have stayed the same?

I think the teamwork element has stayed the same, I don’t think that’s changed a great deal. We work closely as a team and we trust each other implicitly within that team and ultimately we put fires out, which is very much the nuts and bolts of the job. It’s something that’s always stayed the same, I think will always be the same.

What makes your job special?

I think by and large I think I can speak for myself and most people in the fire service, it’s helping people. It’s helping people in the community, it’s supporting people in the community and keeping people safe, I think that’s ultimately what I, what we, love about it.

Have you always worked in Harborough?

No, I’ve been in Leicestershire Fire and Rescue Service for over 25 years now, but I’ve spent my time in the city of Leicester, I’ve spent some time out in Oakham and I’ve spent some time in Wigston, but my last seven years I’ve been here at Market Harborough.

What is special about doing your job in Harborough/Harborough area?

I think in Harborough it’s giving back to the community and making sure we’re keeping people safe and having some partnership working as well. We work with some great partnerships within Harborough and Harborough County Council or District Council, we do a lot of work with them which is great and is really rewarding.