Shropshire’s firefighting footballers

Firefighting footballers: A safe pair of hands with goalie Steve Taylor (left) and firefighting colleague Jamie Hammonds who have both been picked for the England fire services football team.

Two firefighters from Shropshire Fire and Rescue Service have been picked for the England Fire Services Football Squad.

Goalkeeper Steve Taylor and midfielder Jamie Hammonds both represented their country in a recent match against the Royal Marines held in Exeter.

The two players, from Telford, who are regulars in the Shropshire firefighters football team, were successful after going for trials in Leicestershire, said team manager Gary Thompson.

"It is amazing for us to have two firefighters chosen for the national firefighting team considering Shropshire has such a small fire and rescue service compared to other larger cities. They have both done really well to get into the team."

Steve, a retained firefighter based at Wellington fire station, is a former Warwickshire cricketer and AFC Telford Utd player. He played for the Telford club for a year after leaving New College in Wellington where he studied PE and geography.

After leaving AFC Telford, the 24-year-old joined Kidderminster Harriers before becoming a retained firefighter – a job he “loves” which includes working in Community Fire Safety with the brigade’s Outreach vehicle.

Jamie (27), of Blue Watch in Telford, is a former Wales schoolboy player, and went for trials with Hereford Utd. But being a firefighter is the job he always wanted to do.

“I only played the last ten minutes and we lost 3 nil but it was still a good experience,” said Jamie.

12th November, 2010