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A GROUP of women have been put through their paces by the Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service to mark International Women’s Day.

The nine participants carried out simulated ladder lifts, hose-running, equipment carrying, hose techniques and a search wearing full breathing apparatus.

The group were joined by Hampshire Fire and Rescue Authority chairman Councillor Chris Carter, who took part in the activities.

The women were all members of HFRS staff, and some are now considering applying to be on-call firefighters in their spare time, while others wanted an insight into the challenges fire crews face.

Inclusion and Diversity Manager Leanne Illman was among the members of office staff those who took part in the event.

She said: ‘The day was a great success and gave us all a greater insight into the incredible work our firefighters do every day.

‘It is also important to raise awareness that women are perfectly capable of becoming firefighters and are increasingly doing just that.

‘The day was a lot of fun but it is also about giving more women a taste of what firefighters do and making people realise they can overcome challenges they may not have previously thought possible.’