A Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service firefighter and member of support staff has retired after 44 years of serving his community and is planning to hit the road with his favourite band.
I am looking forward to spending more time with the children and looking after them while Rachel also tries to get me some what cultured while we travel around New Zealand. I am also looking forward to picking-up a guitar again, something I gave up many years a go when we had our children.
Steve Knight, joined the Service in 1974 when he was just 20. He was the fifth generation in his family to become a firefighter and has had a long career in different roles, starting off as a firefighter at Burton Fire Station. His daughter Helena has also carried on the family tradition, spending time as a firefighter with Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service.
Steve has made a lasting impression on SFRS having been an instrumental part of the planning and building of the new community fire stations dotted around the county. He originally started work on the PFI pilot for the first of the new modernised stations but soon found himself staying on and putting off retirement to complete all 21 of the buildings, a legacy he is proud to be leaving.
He said: “Being part of the PFI Project was by far the biggest challenge I faced during my time with the Service. I’ve been to incidents and fought fires but getting the project organised and completed with all the legal and complicated aspects it involved, was one of the highlights of my career because I just think these are fantastic buildings.”
Steve was due to retire in 2010 but when his late wife Glynis was diagnosed with cancer she insisted he continued to work, so that he would have something to focus on when she was no longer alive. Glynis sadly passed away six years ago, aged just 56.
Steve has since met his partner, Rachel, who he will be spending his retirement with travelling, whilst also spending time with his two daughters, Kelly and Helena, and his six grandchildren.
Steve said: “I am looking forward to spending more time with the children and looking after them while Rachel also tries to get me some what cultured while we travel around New Zealand. I am also looking forward to picking-up a guitar again, something I gave up many years a go when we had our children. I used to play in a band but I sold my guitar, got married and bought a Ford Capri instead. So now I am retiring I am planning to hopefully go on tour behind the merchandise store with Marillion, my favourite band.”
Chief Fire Officer Becci Bryant said: “Steve has been such an important part of the Service and it has been a privilege to work with him. He really has left his mark on the Service having done such an amazing job on the PFI stations, which will be used by crews for years to come.
“He is definitely going to be missed but we all hope he really enjoys his well earned retirement and spending time with his family and of course Marillion.”