Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service
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MEMBERS of Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Authority (GMFRA) voted unanimously on Thursday, February 19, to approve the appointment of a new County Fire Officer and Chief Executive to lead the organisation.
Peter O’Reilly, who is currently Assistant County Fire Officer and Director of Prevention and Protection at Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service (GMFRS), will take up the post in June following the retirement of long-serving ‘Chief’ Steve McGuirk.
Peter, 48, who lives in Worsley with his wife Christine, two daughters and six-year-old grandson, joined GMFRS in February 2011 from Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue Service where he served 21 years of his 25 year career.
Councillor David Acton, Chairman of GMFRA, said: “It will be a hard act to follow Steve but I am confident that Peter is the right person for this job. He has a great deal of experience both operationally and in management. He has led prevention and protection initiatives to great effect both here and in Northern Ireland. I am sure he will take the Service forward in a really positive way.”
Peter described the announcement of his appointment as “the proudest day of my career as a firefighter.”
He added: “Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service is the most innovative fire and rescue service in the country. We are leading the way in future firefighting techniques to keep our staff safer, we are leading the way in community initiatives and engagement to keep local people safer and we are leading the way in youth development. I am particularly proud of our work in this last category where firefighters are working with young people who have not had the privileges that I have had to develop them in such a way that they will have a very bright future as apprentices or through obtaining functional or academic qualifications to help them to have a better life.
“The last three or four years have been challenging for many people in many ways but, thanks to the leadership of the Fire Authority, we have achieved some great things for our communities. What was once known as the ‘Fire Brigade’ now provides a much wider rescue service – rescuing people in many different ways. It is this that gives me the aspiration to fill Steve’s shoes. It is this that provides my passion.”