Executive Leadership Team
Chief Fire Officer
Assistant Chief Fire Officer
Assistant Chief Fire Officer
Area Manager - Strategy and Performance
Area Manager - Community Safety
Strategic Finance Manager
Area Manager - Service Delivery
Strategic HR Manager
Chris started his career as an operational firefighter based at Gateshead Community Fire Station in 1997.
He has an impressive and varied background in training, community safety and operations and has taken a lead role in a number of national resilience programmes.
He was appointed Chief Fire Officer in February 2017, taking up the post in April 2017. Chris has held a number of roles within the fire service, including Station Officer for community safety, during which time he was instrumental in introducing home safety checks which have significantly reduced fires in the home.
After joining the Strategic Management Team in 2009, Chis worked as an Area Manager and then in 2013 was appointed Assistant Chief Officer, assuming overall responsibility for services across five districts, operations, community safety and fire safety.
Chris sits on the Operations Co-ordination Committee (OCC), the lead body for Urban Search and Rescue (USAR) and he was the project executive for the national guidance work on transport.
He led the introduction of Targeted Response Vehicles (TRVs), day crewing close-call shift patterns, Cobra Coldcut technology and more efficient methods of staffing appliances while facilitating first-class firefighter training.
Policy and collaboration are integral to Chris’s current role and will continue to be a focus going forward. He works collaboratively with Northumbria Police and other key partners, and the implementation of the Integrated Risk Management Plan is an important part of his remit.
Under his leadership, Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service will focus on workforce reform and broadening and strengthening our contribution to our community.
John has served with Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service since 1990 and is currently responsible for leading the Organisational Development Group, incorporating HR, training, risk and assurance, policy, performance and governance. He is our strategic lead for equality, diversity and inclusion. He also undertakes strategic command, as a key element of his operational role.
Previously as Assistant Chief, John led the Community Safety Group, delivering emergency response together with operations and resilience planning, legislative fire safety, prevention, education and community engagement. He has also contributed to national fire service strategic groups, including co-leading the production of national operational guidance for Incident Command for the UK Fire Service.
Since starting his career as a firefighter John has had a varied service, both in front line operational firefighting, as well as in training, operational command and management. Prior to becoming Assistant Chief, John held a number of strategic positions, including responsibility for community safety, HR, contingencies, together with regional and national roles.
In addition John is also Vice Chair of the National Fire Chiefs Council National Operational Effectiveness Working Group, a member of the Common Purpose Advisory Board, and formerly; Chair of the British American Project, a transatlantic leadership network and think-tank; Chair of Northumbria Local Resilience Forum; and Chair of Governors at Fellside Community Primary School, an OFSTED judged outstanding school.
Alan began his fire and rescue service career in Northumberland in 1989, transferring to Tyne and Wear in 1995 as an operational firefighter based at Pilgrim Street station in Newcastle.
Before taking up the post of ACO, Alan was Area Manager for community safety, with responsibility for:
- the control room
- operations and resilience
- fire safety
- prevention and education.
This role included overseeing our specialist national operational functions, including
- swiftwater rescue
- urban search and rescue
- detection, identification and monitoring of hazardous substances
- high volume pump (HVP)
Alan has enjoyed a broad range of roles including leading firefighter and Sub Officer and Station Officer, before moving on to management roles in fire safety, operations and community safety. He has held senior manager positions for service delivery, regional control and HR, learning and development.
He has contributed to the development of operational policy and procedures, organisational reviews and preparation for hosting large events including the Olympics and Rugby World Cup events.
Alan is also the current president of the Northern Branch of the Institute of Fire Engineers.
Before becoming a firefighter, Alan was a Mechanical Engineer at British Alcan Aluminium Ltd.
Phil began his career as an operational firefighter based at Swalwell and then Gateshead Community Fire Stations. He was also a leading firefighter at Byker Community Fire Station.
Phil went on to work in fire safety for several years, holding various positions across Tyne and Wear before becoming Fire Safety Station Manager at North Tyneside. He then moved to service headquarters, where he was involved in refining the risk based inspection programme.
He also worked on a project to improve risk information, ensuring firefighters have the right information to safely deal with any potential hazards when attending an incident.
In 2011 Phil became a Group Manager and has fulfilled several roles, including operations and resilience, fire safety and North Tyneside District Manager. He managed projects including a review of fire safety and the developing the Primary Authority Scheme, which was introduced as part of the government’s better regulation agenda.
Phil is currently Area Manager for Strategy and Performance. He graduated from the University of Central Lancashire in 2003 with a Bachelor of Engineering in fire engineering. He has used this to support a number of projects including the development of the second Tyne Tunnel crossing, where he was instrumental in the installation of a fixed fire suppression (sprinkler) system.
Prior to joining fire and rescue, Phil worked in sales within the John Lewis Partnership.
Lynsey began her career with Cumbria Fire and Rescue Service in May 2000 where she initially served as a firefighter at Carlisle Fire Station. She progressed to become a Crew Manager at Workington Fire Station then took on a Watch Manager role.
In 2008 Lynsey took a national secondment, which involved developing and delivering the Enhanced Command Support capability as part of the National Resilience Programme.
On her return to Cumbria she worked as part of the Operational Training Department and played a key role in establishing a new incident command school. Lynsey then progressed to the role of Flexible Duty Station Manager in service delivery, overseeing both whole time and retained fire stations.
She went on to manage the initial fire control transition from Cumbria to Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service. This project developed further with the agreement of the introduction of a North West Fire Control function which was to be based in Warrington.
As Transition Manager for North West Fire Control, Lynsey managed the changeover of Cumbria’s mobilising function into the regional facility. She later took on responsibility for a number of strategic projects on behalf of Cumbria.
In May 2015 Lynsey secured a Group Manager position with Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service, where she was responsible for the Operational Policy and Assurance function. This included:
- operational training
- incident command training
- business continuity
- internal and external planning
- fire control liaison
- technical services
- operational policy
She spent 12 months in the role then transferred to service delivery, where she was responsible for Warrington and Halton unitary areas.
Lynsey’s role as Area Manager for Community Safety in Tyne and Wear involves the strategic responsibility for:
- control room and mobilising function
- fire safety
- prevention and education
- technical services centre
Lynsey is an avid supporter of staff networks in order to encourage and support minority groups and members of the local community.
She was the North West Regional Representative for Women in the Fire Service for several years. She was also an active member of Cheshire’s FirePride network and successfully launched women’s networks in both of her previous services.
Dennis began his career in the private sector, before joining the accountancy section of Sunderland City Council in 1978. He gained his AAT qualifications and qualified as a CIPFA Accountant in 1985.
He has wealth of experience and knowledge of public sector finance, specialising in local government and fire service related finance.
Dennis held various senior management roles at the council, covering:
- government grant funding mechanisms
- resource planning and management
- Treasury management
- income management
He also provided a full financial service to external bodies including Beamish Museum, Bowes Railway Ltd and the former Tyne and Wear Development Company Ltd. More recently he advised on the technical issues in respect of the council’s newly created ‘Care’ trading companies.
Dennis joined us in October 2016 as the Authority’s Strategic Finance Manager. He is responsible for the finance and procurement functions of the Authority and is also the statutory Section 151 Officer for the service.
This means that he manages all of the financial affairs of the service. He has a responsibility to the taxpayers of Tyne and Wear to ensure sound and proper arrangements are in place to effectively administer the financial affairs of the Authority.
John joined us in 1987 as an operational firefighter based at Tunstall. He progressed through several front line operational positions before moving into training, initially in the north division, and then at service headquarters.
He worked on multi agency training exercises and a two year programme to introduce training validations. This was based on a national policy document outlining expectations for training operational staff, which introduced a more consistent approach across the service.
John’s career in training continued and he became Senior Learning and Development Manager. He was responsible for introducing e-learning to complement the existing training programme. This included an interactive first aid and trauma management package which was adopted by other fire and rescue services.
John progressed to service delivery in 2009, as Group Manager. He worked on replacing the system used to mobilise appliances and capture incident information, progressing the project to procurement stage.
As an Area Manager, John worked in community safety for 12 months before moving back to service delivery in 2013. He is responsible for the management of all 17 community fire stations across the service and for prevention and education in each local authority area.
- ensuring all operational firefighters are appropriately trained
- promoting community and firefighter safety
- prioritising prevention and education activities to protect the most vulnerable people
Performance is an important aspect of the role. John leads the Performance Action Group, which monitors performance against local indicators to ensure resources are targeted effectively.
John represents the service on the Emergency Services Mobile Communications programme. This project is working to ensure a smooth transition from our current airwave system to the new National Emergency Services Network.
Before joining the fire and rescue service, John worked for ship builders Austin and Pickersgill, completing an apprenticeship as a plumber.
John works closely with our other senior managers to provide strategic direction for the Service and inform Fire Authority decision-making.
He has extensive experience of Human Resources and Organisational Development with a strong record of leading complex services and projects in demanding, dynamic circumstances.
John specialises in:
- Human Resources strategy and leadership
- employee engagement
- employee relations
- unionised negotiations for change and transformation
- employment law and formal processes
- pay and reward
- diversity and inclusion
- organisation development
- joint working with executives / non-executives (boards and elected members)