Paul Davidson, a dedicated volunteer at the Mansfield Fire Museum, has firefighting in his blood, thanks to his parents’ illustrious careers as Mansfield firefighters. With nearly 40 years of service at the museum, located behind the Mansfield Fire Station, Paul has fond memories of the station, as it was the workplace of his father, Roy, who served for 25 years and contributed to the fire auxiliaries during World War II. . His mother, Patricia, also worked at the Mansfield Fire Station. For Paul, firefighters are an integral part of his life and his commitment to the museum reflects this.
A historic retreat: the impressive collections of the Mansfield Fire Museum
Mansfield Fire Museum, located on the grounds of the former 1939 training school, houses a large collection of firefighting memorabilia.The museum proudly has the largest collection of cap badges in the UK and displays over 200 different helmets from around the world, making it one of the most extensive collections of its kind. Among its notable artifacts, visitors can see a sketch of the Great Fire of London of 1666, a rarity of which only a handful have survived in the world. This remarkable piece is presented in the National Hall, while another exhibition is devoted to the discovery of firefighters from different countries.
A Sense of Brotherhood: Family Firefighters as Dedicated Volunteer
Paul emphasizes the strong sense of camaraderie and kinship among firefighters, regardless of location. Proof that firefighters can travel to the four corners of the world and still be welcomed as old friends by their firefighter counterparts.It is this sense of common purpose and unity that fuels a passion for firefighters. The Mansfield Fire Museum serves as a symbol of this connection and Paul takes great pride in sharing his treasures with the community.
A Growing Museum: A Showcase of the Evolution of Firefighting
Over the past four decades, the Mansfield Fire Museum has grown from a modest collection to an extraordinary institution. Today, visitors can explore a range of captivating exhibits spanning the years. These exhibits show the evolution of pumps from notable locations such as Welbeck Estate, Hardwick Hall and the John Players cigarette factory.Additionally, a 2003 Dennis Saber fire truck stands proudly as a testament to modern firefighting technology. The mission of the museum is to give the community a glimpse of the rich heritage of firefighting and to inspire future generations.
Visiting the museum: access by appointment and community support for Dedicated Volunteer
Due to its dedicated volunteer-run nature, the Mansfield Fire Museum is open to the public by appointment only. Visitors, including schools and community groups, can arrange a tour to explore the site and interact with its fascinating exhibits. While volunteers dedicate their time and effort to nurturing this invaluable resource, a minimum donation of £1 per person is require, as this goes a long way in sustaining the museum for generations to come.
Paul Davidson and his fellow dedicated volunteers strive to preserve the legacy of firefighting, creating a space that has both historical significance and educational value. The Mansfield Fire Museum is a testament to the courage and dedication of firefighters past and present, ensuring that their heroic contributions are celebrate and appreciate within the community.