Worcester Cathedral to host Fire Service major venue training

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Worcester Cathedral is delighted to be teaming up with Hereford and Worcester Fire and Rescue Service (HWFRS) to provide the venue for a major training exercise this month.

On Sunday 6 November HWFRS will be carrying out one of its biggest training exercises in recent years, using the Cathedral as a venue.

Worcester Cathedral is one of the biggest and most historic major landmarks in the area and it is important that necessary planning for major incidents takes place, whether at the Cathedral or at other landmarks in the county.

HWFRS will be planning a ‘dry run’ of a portable high-volume water pump which will draw water from the River Severn up to the Cathedral.

HWFRS will also help the Cathedral in actioning its Salvage Plan in the event of a major incident.

Group Commander Adrian Farmer, district commander of HWFRS’ South District, said: “Around 10 fire engines and crews from Worcester, Pershore, Malvern, Upton-upon-Severn, Evesham, Pebworth and Broadway Fire Stations will be taking part in the exercise.”

“Careful planning means that our emergency fire and rescue response capabilities will remain at normal levels throughout the day for the safety of all communities in Herefordshire and Worcestershire.

“People visiting the city of Worcester on November 6 should, however, be aware that there will be some road closures and local traffic disruption while the exercise is taking place.”

The Cathedral will be closed for general visiting on this day, but services (at 8.00am, 10.30am, 4.00pm & 6.30pm) will take place as normal.

The Dean of Worcester, the Very Reverend Peter Atkinson, said: “It is very important for historic landmarks like the Cathedral to be prepared for all eventualities. The Cathedral houses very important collections as well as historic artefacts, royal tombs, and what is reputed to be the second largest Cathedral Library in the country, containing a collection of Medieval manuscripts dating back to Anglo Saxon times onwards. It is obviously our hope that the training carried out as part of this exercise will never need to be put into practice, but it is equally important that we prepare for any such incidents and ensure that we protect our visitors, staff and the important historical items in our care.

“We are extremely happy to provide a venue to assist the fire service in its training in the use of the high-volume water pumps, as the closest major building to the River Severn, which could one day prove vital should a major incident occur.”

For more information about Worcester Cathedral, please visit www.worcestercathedral.co.uk