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Sir Ken Knight Reports on Cultural Change at Essex County Fire & Rescue Service

Sir Ken Knight, former Government Chief Fire and Rescue Advisor, has presented his interim progress report on cultural change at Essex County Fire and Rescue Service to the Essex Fire Authority.

One of the key recommendations from Irene Lucas’ Review of Culture at the Service, which was published last September, was for an interim progress review to be carried out, which Sir Ken undertook last month.

In his report Sir Ken recognised the large amount of work that has been undertaken to transform the culture in the service and the good progress that has been made. He also pointed out that there was no room for complacency. The Fire Service in Essex is on a journey, and it is still at the beginning of that journey and has a significant way to travel before getting to the end of it.

Sir Ken Knight said: “During my time with Essex County Fire and Rescue Service I identified a number of areas where significant progress has been made, including the 2020 Programme which sets the direction of the Service into the future.”

“I was encouraged by the determination of the Fire Authority, the senior leadership team and the representative bodies to work together to turn the Service around.”

“A lot of good work has been started, but there is still some way to go to build on this work and embed change throughout the Authority and Service.  I look forward to visiting again in the future to see the progress that has been made.”

Sir Ken will revisit the Service in December to do a further progress check.

Anthony Hedley, Chairman of Essex Fire Authority, said: “I’d like to thank Sir Ken for undertaking this review of progress and I welcome his report that clearly demonstrates the major steps that have been taken following Irene Lucas’ Review of Culture last autumn.

“We have set firm foundations to complete the cultural turnaround that the Service needs and I need to thank everyone in the Service for showing such commitment to succeed with this crucial objective.

“I look forward to continuing the work needed to make Essex County Fire and Rescue Service an organisation that we can all be proud of.”

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