Fire-fighters don full kit for bike ride

KIRRIE fire-fighters will make sure they won’t get out of breath this weekend when they take part in a three day sponsored bike ride - for they will be cycling wearing their full breathing apparatus.

A team of cyclists will take it in turn to follow in the footsteps of their counterparts from the station who set out on a similar challenge 20 years ago, visiting all the full-time and retained fire stations throughout Tayside.

Two decades later the team, which includes four of the original cyclists, have been busy training for their gruelling task of biking 230 miles in full gear to visit 20 stations and raise funds for Radio Tay’s Cash for Kids.

The four original members of the team are watch manager Chic Stewart, David Jump, Andrew Stewart and Ian Gray.

The participants have been split into three teams with the first team of Scott Gibson, Chic Stewart, Danny Gall, Judi Young, Jim Burrows, Richard Naesmith, Darren Douglas, Andy Pate and Roy Christie leaving Kirrie at 12 on Friday to cycle to stations at Alyth, Blairgowrie, Dunkeld, Pitlochry, Aberfeldy and Crieff.

Each cyclist takes it in turn to cycle whilst the rest of the team travel in a support vehicle.

They cycle until their cylinder runs out.

On Saturday the team of Ian Gray, David Jump, Andrew Stewart, Suzi Watson, Steve McVicar, Gavin Ramsay and Craig Murray will leave Crieff to visit fire stations in Comrie, Auchterarder, Kinross, Perth, Coupar Angus, McAlpine Road Dundee, Blackness Road Dundee, Kingsway Dundee, Balmossie Dundee with the final day seeing Ian Gray, Scott Gibson, Andrew Stewart, Jim Burrows, Suzi Watson, Gavin Ramsay, Ben Gray, Danny Gall and Jonny Gray leaving Balmossie to bike to Carnoustie, Arbroath, Montrose, Brechin, Forfar before returning to Kirriemuir for 4 pm.

As well as raising funds for Cash for Kids, the fire-fighters are also taking the opportunity of promoting the message of home safety as they visit the fire-stations throughout Tayside.

Fire-fighter Suzy Watson explained they will be selling programmes en-route at a cost of £2.

The programme includes a free raffle ticket for a draw for top prizes which include driving an Audi TT for a weekend and the free hire of a holiday cottage for a week.

Suzy said: “We are also trying to promote fire safety advice whilst we are out in the local communities. We can make home visits where we carry out fire safety advice checks and, if necessary, install smoke alarms.

“We have been selling the programmes, which features local adverts, at local events including the Kirrie Show and the Arbroath Sea Fest, and will be selling them as we visit the local fire stations.

“We will also have donation buckets with us.”

The cycling team consists of retained fire-fighters based at Kirriemuir, as well as full-time fire-fighters from Dundee.

So far they have raised £4,000 for Cash for Kids but donations can also be made on-line through the website