ONE of the fire service’s biggest – and smallest – fans is raising cash for a charity close to his heart.
Andrew Impey, 10, who is autistic, is going to cycle to six stations across the county as he travels to Hampshire Fire and Rescue headquarters in Eastleigh.
His 35-mile journey will also take him to Portchester, Wickham, Botley, Southsea and Cosham.
The Cosham schoolboy hopes to raise £1,000 for the Fire Fighters Charity.
Andrew, from Cosham, said: ‘I love the fire service and sitting in the fire engine. I wanted to do something to help firefighters and raise awareness of autism.
‘I think they do an amazing job, not everyone knows all the things they do besides fighting fires.’
I love the fire service and sitting in the fire engine. I wanted to do something to help firefighters and raise awareness of autism
As previously reported, he is also hoping to complete an ambitious challenge to visit every fire station in the UK.
He has already stopped off at about 550 and has transformed his room into a fire station.
He dreams of completing the last on his 18th birthday before starting work for the fire service the next day.
His journey has spanned thousands of miles, starting with those operated by Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service, where he lives, before picking off counties on the way up to Scotland.
Fire crews have welcomed Andrew who has documented his travels on Twitter and Facebook and has been given more than 800 trinkets and bits of kit from firefighters.
He has stored and displayed equipment in his bedroom and even put a fire map on the wall to recreate the look of a station.
Other items bought from fire expos are also on show.
Stations from Canada and the US learned about his quest on social media and sent him firefighter-related gifts.
His journey started when his parents took him to Havant station on Christmas Eve 2014.
He has currently raised more than £600 of his target on his JustGiving page.
Andrew – who is known by his first and middle names Andrew Dane on social media – has developed an encyclopaedic knowledge of the fire service and even reads the trade press to keep up to date.
There are about 2,000 stations across Britain but Andrew plans to include emergency services based at airports and those in Ireland.