TV stars and vintage engines - more Ipswich fire station open day photos in Days Gone By
PUBLISHED: 18:00 23 July 2020
Today we are sharing more memories of Ipswich Fire Station’s open days over the years, including photos of events in the 1970s, 80s and 90s.
A special guest at the 1989 event was Sean Blowers, star of the hit TV drama series London’s Burning, who grew up in Ipswich.
One of the photos here shows Sean operating some firefighting equipment.
Peter Coleman wrote in with his memories after our previous article about the 1984 open day.
He wrote: “I did not attend but I do have some knowledge about some of the people and appliances contained in the article.
“In the “on parade” picture, in amongst the line up in the middle the man with the beard and without a helmet is my brother Alan Coleman and second to the right of him is my father E T Coleman (known to all as Ted Coleman) and just to the right of him is Keith Ottywill.”
A couple of the photos also featured the Austin K3 Heavy Pumping Unit owned by Peter’s father.
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MORE: Did you attend Ipswich fire station open day in 1984?
Peter said: “One photo showed the unit in action with, at the rear, Alan Coleman operating the pump and my father supervising operation of the pump. The K3 was shown to be an AFS unit (Auxillary Fire Service) and if I recall correctly was painted red at the time.
“Normally myself and my other brother John would have been part of the ‘crew’, but I suspect that, if the open day were on a Saturday, then I would have been playing football and John playing rugby.”
Another photo featured Keith Ottywill operating a small towed pump. Peter said: “He was also the owner of the grey NFS (National Fire Service) Austin K2 vehicle in the background of the picture.
“I can recall that both these units (my father’s K3 and Keith’s K2) were again called into action as part of a television programme starring Frankie Howerd, Then Churchill Said to Me, when they were filming in Ipswich, in London Road and the two units were used as part of the filming. This was reported in the EADT at the time. I was part of the crew that day.
MORE: When Frankie Howerd filmed in Ipswich in 1982
“My father also owned another wartime heavy pumping unit, a Ford Variant of the Austin, but we did not have that one running.
“At that time we used to attend many old time rallies and the Ipswich to Felixstowe Road Run annually. My father used to have many, many old items, so many in fact that he and my mother Pam opened the Coleman Collection of Bygones at the then family home of Longueville House in Needham Market.
“My father is still alive today and lives in retirement at Overstrand in Norfolk, and he is soon to celebrate his 92nd birthday.”
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