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Is the role of a firefighter for you?

Firefighters of today respond to a wide and varied range of emergencies including road traffic collisions, flooding, people who are trapped, chemical spillages and the new threats associated with terrorism.

Firefighters are extensively involved in Community Fire Safety work. This preventative work is achieved in a variety of ways, but is primarily focused on educating and informing the public.


All remuneration is paid in accordance with the National Joint Council (NJC) Conditions of Service for Local Authorities Fire Brigades.

Salaries for different Firefighter Competency Levels based on NJC July 2021
Level Salary
Trainee: During initial training course £24,191
Development: Following completion of initial training £25,198
Competent: Completion of Phase 2 development (approx 2 years) & IFE (Institute of Fire Engineers) level 2 exams £32,244

Work Pattern

Wholetime firefighters in Derbyshire currently work on either a wholetime, day crewing or weekday plus station working an average of 42 hours per week.

Wholetime stations are staffed using a shift system of 4 watches (blue, green, red and white) operating 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. This comprises of a 4 on 4 off work pattern of 2 day shifts (8am to 7pm) and 2 night shifts (7pm to 8am), followed by 4 days off.

Day crewing stations are staffed using a shift system of 2 watches (blue and red) working in the day on a 4 on 4 off work pattern (7am to 7pm), of 4 day shifts followed by 4 days off. On Call cover is provided during the night.

Weekday plus stations On this system the working hours are a 7 day fortnight based on a Monday to Friday work pattern working 11 hour shifts.  Hours owed are worked at the weekend on an agreed rota system.

Career Opportunities

  • There are many opportunities to progress within the Operational business. As a new firefighter you will begin your journey via a development programme which will give you your first exposure to the Institute of Fire Engineers, also known as IFE, undertaking the Level 2 Certificate in Fire Engineering Science,  Fire Safety and Operations. IFE examinations are required for anyone wanting to access promotion. The examinations run in March and October every year. For individuals who wish to progress through the operational ranks they can undertake further study to access the promotion process.

  • Aspiring Crew Manager – Level 3 Certificate in Fire Operations and Incident Command
  • Aspiring Watch Manager – Level 3 Diploma in Fire Operations and Incident Command


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How many vacancies do you have?

The number of vacancies changes. Courses numbers can range from 10 – 20 trainees. Applicants who do not start on the first course may be placed on a waiting list for future courses.

Can I choose which station to work at?

Unfortunately no, we can only take into account where the Service has vacancies.

You will also be required to work at stations across the county during the development phase to build on experience.

I am a Firefighter in another UK Fire and Rescue Service. Will I be required to go through the whole recruitment process?

Any person who progresses through this recruitment campaign will be required to attend and pass all stages to progress.  Existing Competent Firefighters can apply through the Transfer or Promotions Process.

Will you be considering transfers from another UK Fire & Rescue Service?

A Firefighter Transfer process is available for existing Competent Firefighters.  Please see website for more information and to register your interest.

Will I be paid during the training course?

Yes you will be paid the Firefighter (Trainee) salary during the trainee course on the 25th (or nearest working day) of each month.

Will I get sent out of the County on jobs?

Specific equipment such as the aerial ladder may be used out of County, but aren’t ordinarily. Some resources such as Water Rescue are national and can be used throughout the country.

Will I always work with the same people?

Watches generally remain the same. There may be occasions where someone is called to cover at another station, but they would return back to the Watch after this shift.

Would it be beneficial to volunteer with a Fire & Rescue Service?

Any volunteering opportunity that is community facing would be useful. You will need to prove that you can communicate with, engage with and understand people and communities within Derbyshire.

Can I take any annual leave during the training course?

No, annual leave is not permitted during the training course.  Attendance on the full course is compulsory and all trainees must pass all parts of the course.  The course runs from Monday to Friday for 15 weeks and some leave will be planned in for all trainees.  This leave will be confirmed on the training schedule.

Meet our people

Ceri Gray, Firefighter, Nottingham Road, Green Watch, talking about her career and the variety of the firefighter role.

Amer Khan, Firefighter, talks about the daily tasks of a firefighter and the pro-active side of the Fire Service.

Paul Hawker, Group Manager, Service Delivery, talks about his reasons for joining and highlights of his career.

Edgars Graudins, On-call Firefighter, Alfreton, talks about the difference his role makes in the community.