Thursday, 18 September 2014

Firefighter commemorated 90 years on

A firefighter who died on 23 September 1924 after being injured on duty is being commemorated by his modern day counterparts.

East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service is taking part in a special day to remember Sydney Albert Wise – who was fatally injured at the scene of a fire in Bexhill.

A ceremony will take place at Bexhill Cemetery on the morning of 23 September 2014 followed by the naming of the Life room at Bexhill Community Fire Station.

John Owen from Rother Borough at East Sussex Fire and Rescue said: “We felt that it was right that Firefighter Sydney Albert Wise was remembered by those of us who have followed in his footsteps. People may have seen the memorial to him in the local cemetery and it is important to make sure his sacrifice is not forgotten.”

About Sydney Albert Wise

Sydney Albert Wise was born on 27 Aug 1899 in Pakefield Suffolk England and was only 25 when he died.

The tragedy was reported on by the Hastings and St Leonards Observer, picking up the story when the Hastings Brigade joined the Bexhill Brigade at the scene.

“The Hastings Fire Brigade were called to Bexhill on Friday night, when a serious fire devastated Messrs. Miller and Franklin's furnishing department…. Shortly after eleven, when the fire had reached a critical stage, the Hastings Brigade was summoned.

Captain Alderman Hocking and Lieutenant Chessum, with their men, immediately responded, and in eleven minutes, having attained a speed of 58 miles an hour on the Hastings front, the motor fire engine, Mary, was on the scene.

The Hastings men established themselves at a window at the back of the burning building, and from that point of vantage rendered invaluable help until 2.30 on Saturday morning, when they returned, leaving the fire well under control.

The Bexhill Brigade throughout showed the greatest gallantry, particularly Fireman Sydney Albert Wise, who sustained serious injuries….. and died on Tuesday at the Royal East Sussex Hospital.”

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