Essex County Fire and Rescue Service


Meet Sean, an on-call firefighter in Great Baddow

Thirty-six-year-old Sean Goodchild is a security officer for the Ministry of Defence who is also paid to protect his community as an on-call firefighter.

Sean has always had an interest in the Fire Service so he became an on-call firefighter at Great Baddow Fire Station.

“The role fits perfectly around my job,” says Sean. He works a shift pattern of two days followed by two nights and then has four days off which is when he provides cover in Great Baddow.

“I also have the option of covering some evenings and days while I’m home from London after a shift, which in truth, actually means I cover a lot of hours while I’m at home asleep!” Sean is paid an hourly rate for the time he is on-call and a further pay out for his time when he is called out.

Sean provides 90 hours cover a week in Great Baddow, while off-putting to some, Sean likes the flexibility of the role: “I enjoy that I pick the hours I wish to cover and although 90 hours a week sounds a lot, it is easily managed - I even get to do the school runs most days.”

As soon as the pager goes off, Sean springs into action and has to make his way to Great Baddow Fire Station within five minutes. He could be heading to a house fire, a road traffic collision or even a flood. The crew attend a variety of incidents.

“I get satisfaction knowing that my crew and I are helping the community, nearly every shout is something different and I feel a sense of pride to know that we’ve helped.”

We’re currently recruiting on-call firefighters at Great Baddow Fire Station. Sean’s advice for anyone interested in the role is: “If it suits your lifestyle and you live within five minutes of your local on-call fire station, I would highly recommend you apply to be an on-call firefighter and help your community.”

We’ll be holding drop in sessions for anyone interested in becoming an on-call firefighter at Great Baddow Fire Station on:

  • Wednesday 29 January: Drop in between 1pm – 7pm to chat with our On-Call Liaison Officer. From 6pm, you can watch our training night at the fire station.
  • Saturday 1 February: Our On-Call Liaison Officers will be at Chelmsford Parkrun with a recruitment stall. Drop in between 10am – 4pm to chat with our On-Call Liaison Officer.

Find out more about the role at

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