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Chairman's Column - 999 Day - 9 September 2021

Published on Thursday, 9th September 2021

Emergency Services Day

Cllr Mark Heard, Chairman of Maldon District Council and Les Davis, Tri-Service Rural Community Officer mark 999 Day.

"At 9am on Thursday 9th September in company with Les Davis, the Tri-Service Rural Community Officer, I had the privilege of raising a flag at the District Council Offices to celebrate Emergency Services Day (also known as 999 Day).

"This is an annual event held in the UK each year and is part of the National Services Memorial, a registered charity in England, Wales and Scotland. Its main goal is to celebrate the contribution of people who serve or who have served in the UK Emergency Services, as well as promoting volunteering within those services.

"But WHY is it held on September 9th? Well, in many countries, there are telephone numbers that people use to contact their local emergency services. The better known emergency service numbers are probably 999, 911 or 112, however, 999 is the oldest one and it is this number that prompted the choice of the date for Emergency Services Day, so it is observed on September 9 (being the 9th day of the 9th month) beginning at 9am.

"This special day highlights and promotes volunteering across the emergency services and educates the public on essential life-saving skills, promoting the responsible use of the emergency services.

"It also gives associated charities an opportunity to generate, support and raise funds. Les Davis is the Tri-Service Rural Community Officer, representing all three emergency services; he has been working in the Maldon and the Dengie peninsular areas of Essex and has established himself as a pivotal member of the community making Essex safer by working and collaborating with Essex County Fire and Rescue Service (ECFRS), Essex Police and The East of England Ambulance Service Trust (EEAST). 

"His role is part of a 15-month pilot between the services with the support of Roger Hirst the Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner for Essex. Linking all three emergency services together in such a collaborative way means organisations can either directly tackle or pass on safety concerns at a very local level. As we continue working throughout the current health crisis things obviously run a little differently, but flexibility and collaboration are key areas to make a real difference to Maldon District.

"Whilst raising the flag I will be remembering many of my emergency services colleagues past and present that I encountered in my 40 years working for Essex Police and recognizing the great contributions of our local heroes - Police Officers, Special Constables, firefighters and ambulance workers. Many of these people are the first responders and they are the real life savers!  No wonder this special day is worth celebrating. I hope you too will spare a thought and support those who put their lives on the line each day to keep us safe".