Emergency services get their time to shine as hundreds head down for 999 Day

EMERGENCY services were given their time in the spotlight at the annual 999 Day in Fareham on Saturday.

By The Newsroom
Monday, 17th October 2016, 6:00 am
Updated Tuesday, 25th October 2016, 6:25 pm
American police enthusiasts Garry Walton and Martyn Calder 'arrest' shopper Gwen Samphille                
Picture: Ian Hargreaves (161263-2)
American police enthusiasts Garry Walton and Martyn Calder 'arrest' shopper Gwen Samphille Picture: Ian Hargreaves (161263-2)

The event in West Street, saw hundreds quiz their local services on the roles that they perform in the community.

A variety of services were on hand to shine a light on the work they do.

The services included South Central Ambulance Service, Hampshire Constabulary, HM Coastguard rescue service and Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service.

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Claire Pittick, from Portchester, said the event had been ‘a great day out’.

She said: ‘It’s great that people can come along and have such a nice time with their services.

‘Kids used to be brought up on the idea that the services must always be respected and days like this give them the chance to meet them and create relationships with them.

‘This builds trust and also shows children who they can come to, should they ever need it.

‘It’s a really great day out and it has been fantastic to see so many people here.’

One of the services that got the most attention was a team from bomb disposal unit Ramora, who brought along two bomb disposal robots to wow visitors.

Steve Fielding, from Lee-on-the-Solent, brought his son Caelan, two, and daughter, Selina, four, along to the event and Caelan was a big fan of the robots.

Steve said: ‘He loves everything with a siren, but this has really grabbed his attention.

‘It is really great that events like this are put on as it lets kids appreciate the importance of our services.

‘They are giving up their time for us to come and see them, so we should really make the most of that.’

Visitors also had the chance to see an American Highway Patrol car on display.

The packed event saw volunteers and workers from Serv Wessex, the Royal Navy Lifeboat Institution and St John Ambulance Service talk to visitors about their work.

Leah Day, 21, from Titchfield emphasised the importance of people getting involved with their services.

She said: ‘It’s great to see it so busy and I think it just shows how important it is that people are coming down to interact with their emergency services.

‘The work that they do should never be underestimated and it is nice that we can come down and meet them, as they are so busy all the time.’