Essex County Fire and Rescue Service


Charity Tuesday: On-call firefighter fundraising for emergency services

Saffron Walden on-call firefighter, Leszek Galczynski, is raising money for emergency services colleagues by completing the Chester Treadmill Test while carrying a Breathing Apparatus cylinders training set 21 times in 21 days.

He is raising money as part of the Blue Light Get Active Challenge which is in aid of The Fire Fighters Charity, Police Care UK, The Ambulance Staff Charity (TASC) and The Air Ambulance Service. 

You can support Leszek in his fundraising efforts here.

Leszek, who is paid to protect his community as an on-call firefighter at Saffron Walden Fire Station, is on furlough from his events management job and wanted to find a way to keep him fit and focused.

The father-of-three said: "I'm on my feet all day when I'm working so I needed something to get me active. My wife is really active too so she encouraged me to get involved in the Blue Light challenge; it was perfect because I wanted to support all emergency services.

"The Chester Treadmill Test is part of our physical assessment so it will get me ready for it. I tried four tests in a row and it was really tough, but I'm doing one a day for 21 days wearing the Breathing Apparatus training set.

"I always walk our dog with a backpack on so I'm used to walking with extra weight, but by the time you reach the steepest incline, you can really feel it pulling you down."

The Chester Treadmill Test is a 12-minute graded treadmill walk to assess aerobic capacity. It starts at a 0% gradient and ends at a 15% gradient.

Leszek started the challenge on Monday 25 January and wants to raise as much as possible.

Leszek joined Essex County Fire and Rescue Service in September and has loved every minute so far.

He said: "It has been amazing. I'm 45 and I've had a lot of roles in my career working for large corporate companies but this is the best job ever. There are so many opportunities to develop and learn.

"I've worked for corporate companies but, having lived in Saffron Walden since 2007, I really want to give something back to my community."

If you live or work within 5 minutes of an on-call fire station, you could be paid to protect your community as an on-call firefighter like Leszek. 

Find out more about the role at

Page last updated 2 February, 2021

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