Firefighters have helped to deliver more than 1,000 Covid-19 vaccinations over the Christmas period.

Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service has been supporting the vaccination programme for 12 months, and after the Prime Minister pushed for all over 18s to be boosted by the end of the year, they knew that they were going to be in for a extremely challenging and busy vaccination program.

In mid-December, NHS colleagues requested assistance from the Local Resilience Forums for help and the fire service quickly agreed to repurpose a cohort of staff trained vaccination staff to help across all the county's sites

45 staff had a range of options to provide support - many moving leave to populate a challenging NHS rota over the Christmas period.

Within a five day period the fire service delivered more than 1000 vaccinations, with more staff providing support over the coming weeks.

Phase two of this program will see more staff trained to undertake these duties with many more staff currently undergoing training and on standby to operate in areas of most need.

Recently, the county fire service was named FIRE Magazine’s Emergency Service of the Year for 2020/2021.

The prestigious accolade was awarded to them for being at the forefront of the country’s fire sector response to the COVID-19 pandemic, staff going above and beyond to keep communities safe.

This included their help in the vaccination drive, helping with the fitting of P3 face masks and distributing food parcels to those shielding.

Staff also assisted with the set-up of the temporary mortuary at BAE systems whilst others worked as fire safety regulators within the design, and build a team for the Lancashire Recovery Centre, based in Preston.

In December 2020, the service was the first to roll out Lateral Flow Testing before 328 members of the service helped to administer nearly 500,000 vaccines.