Apply to be a firefighter

Are you passionate about helping people? A career as a firefighter is challenging, but also hugely rewarding.

Registration for firefighter recruitment is now closed and the selection process is underway.

Read our Candidate Information Pack (PDF: 1MB) for more information.

Who we’re looking for

To apply to become a firefighter, you must be at least 17 years and 6 months old. Full training is provided and we welcome applications from everyone, regardless of gender, religion or ethnicity.

We need people who are resilient, confident and physically fit, as well as good communicators and team workers. Because firefighters work closely with all of our local communities, they must also be compassionate and committed to diversity.

Application process

If you’re interested in becoming a firefighter, you’ll need to complete a rigorous and time-bound application process.

You will need to pass each of the stages to progress to the next one. When each stage closes, you will be informed by email whether you have been invited to complete the next stage. Please check your emails regularly, including your junk folder.

If you have any questions about the selection process, you can email

1. Registration and eligibility screening

You will need to complete a basic online questionnaire to make sure you are eligible to apply.

Registration closed at 11.59pm on Monday 18 November 2019.

2. Behavioural styles questionnaire and situational judgement test

These online assessments explore your preferred behaviours and values in a working environment, as well as your judgement and decision-making skills. Take a look at some more information and examples:

Behavioural Styles Questionnaire (PDF: 170KB)

Situational Judgement Test (PDF: 211KB)

Stage 2 closed at 8.59am on Monday 2 December 2019. Everyone who completed both tests were advised of the outcome on 4 December 2019.

3. Ability tests

These online tests will assess your:

The ability tests will be open between 9am on Monday 9 December and 8.59am on Monday 16 December.

4. Role-related tests

This a series of practical assessments that test the skills needed to become a firefighter. This video shows a few examples:

5. Competency-based interview

This is our chance to get to know more about you and for you to tell us how you meet the requirements for the role.

You will be asked competency-based questions to explore how you have used specific skills in your previous roles and your approach to problems, tasks and challenges.

6. Occupational health medical and fitness test

You will need to take a full medical assessment, carried out by our occupational health provider.

You will be asked to complete a questionnaire about your medical history and the following tests:

  • Hearing
  • Lung function
  • Eyes
  • Grip strength
  • Blood pressure
  • General tests based on your completed medical questionnaire
  • Drug and alcohol


A firefighter’s role is very physically demanding. As a guide, you are likely to have the minimum level of cardiorespiratory fitness required if you can:

  • run 1.5 miles (2.4km) continuously in 12 minutes or less
  • run on a treadmill at 7.5mph (12km/h) for 12 minutes
  • perform the multi-stage shuttle run test (bleep test) to at least level 8, shuttle 8)

You are likely to have the minimum physical strength and muscular endurance if you can shoulder press 25kg once in an overhead, upright seated position.

Preparatory fitness programme

Read the FireFit Steering Group’s guidance on physical training preparation for national firefighter selection tests.

7. Pre-employment checks

Any offers of employment are subject to satisfactory pre-employment checks. For example, we will need to confirm:

  • your identity
  • your right to work in the UK
  • whether you have any criminal convictions

You will also need to provide suitable references covering at least 3 continuous years.