Firefighter (FF) Matt Coulthard has been crowned the 2019 British Champion at the British Firefighter Challenge held in Watford recently.

FF Coulthard competed against 200 firefighters in this event devised to replicate the arduous challenges faced by firefighters in the line of duty. The race consisted of running up a tower, pulling a hose externally up the façade of the tower, forced entry machine, hose dragging, subsequently making the hose up (coiling), carrying hefty container, casualty rescue simulation, and finally a head-to-head run. The overall fastest time being victorious.

The event is organised in support of The Firefighters Charity, in supports serving and retired fire service personnel.

Firefighters worldwide risk their lives on a daily basis for others, occasionally exposing them to situations that leave them scarred for life.

Any physical injury sustained may be apparent, but the mental suffering from exposure goes very frequently undetectable. PTSD has been linked to firefighters throughout the world. The firefighter’s charity has, supporting PTSD suffers at the core of their functions, always willing to step in to offer the helping hand.

Firefighter Coulthard said, “I’m thrilled to have represented Gibraltar and to able to compete for the British title. Fortunately, hard work, training and perseverance has paid off. I am blessed to have exceptional work colleagues who support me. Training together and pushing ourselves to our physical limits.

I am honoured to be able to support this charity and feel extremely proud to bring the British Title back home for the second time.”

The Chief Fire Officer would like to congratulate firefighter Matthew Coulthard for his fantastic effort and outstanding achievements at this prestigious event. Matt is a true ambassador for the GFRS and has no doubt put Gibraltar on the map once again.

The Minister with responsibility for the Fire Service, The Hon Mr Gilbert Licudi also praised firefighter Coulthard for his significant accomplishment.