London Fire Brigade

HMS Severn supports our 150th anniversary celebrations

24 January 2016

As part of our 150th anniversary celebrations the Royal Navy patrol vessel HMS Severn is arriving in the capital for a four-day visit today.

The ship will be greeted in style by one of our Lambeth-based fire boats – Fire Dart – which is saluting Severn with jets of water as she approaches North Greenwich.

HMS Severn will then head for West India Dock where she’ll be berthed for the anniversary celebrations.

On Monday, the ship is hosting a capability demonstration on board in the evening for specially invited guests, including the Commissioner of the London Fire Brigade.

Two buglers from The Band of Her Majesty's Royal Marines, Collingwood, will perform during a ceremonial sunset.

Strong links between Navy and Brigade

Strong links have existed between the Royal Navy and the Fire Brigade since 1866 when the Metropolitan Fire Brigade was established.

Its first Chief Officer Captain, (later Sir), Eyre Massey-Shaw, had a preference for firefighter recruits to have a naval background because they already had similar skills including working at heights, handling ropes and working long hours of duty in isolation.

London Fire Commissioner, Ron Dobson, said: "The London Fire Brigade has long-standing links with the Royal Navy and historically, a large number of firefighters came from a naval background.

"It is therefore wonderful to be able to celebrate our 150th anniversary with these events aboard HMS Severn."

Commanding Officer of HMS Severn, Lieutenant Commander James Reynolds said: "My ship's company and I are looking forward to sailing HMS Severn to the capital and to joining members of the London Fire Brigade in celebrating their 150th Anniversary."

HMS Severn

HMS Severn is the second River-class offshore patrol vessel built by Vosper Thornycroft at their Woolston yard and was commissioned on the 31st July 2003. 

She is one of a trio of offshore patrol vessels patrolling the seas around the UK almost every day of the year.

The past year saw Severn fulfilling not only her Marine Enforcement operations but also deploy on a seven and a half month patrol of the North Atlantic and Caribbean – a role normally reserved for a ship twice her size.

Read more about our 150th anniversary

This year is the 150th anniversary of the formation of the London Fire Brigade.

Although the Great Fire of London happened 350 years ago, it wasn't until 1 January 1866 that we were formed as The Metropolitan Fire Brigade (MFB).

The MFB came about as insurance companies told the government they were unwilling to be responsible for London's fire protection due to escalating compensation costs.