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in policing and fire & rescue
services to make everyone safer

County Durham and Darlington Fire and Rescue Service

County Durham and Darlington Fire and Rescue Service is in the North East of England. It serves an area that includes Darlington, Derwentside, Durham, Easington, Wear and Tees.

Durham city and the larger industrial and commercial towns are in the east of the area. The west is predominantly rural, consisting of open moorland and wooded river valleys, and is sparsely populated. Darlington, the largest town, is undergoing significant regeneration.

The area has good rail and road links, and Newcastle and Durham Tees Valley international airports.

During the last 25 years the traditional industries, such as coal mining and steel manufacturing, have disappeared and have been replaced by high-tech factories and modern business parks in towns such as Peterlee and Sedgefield. Further regeneration is taking place in other local areas such as Spennymoor and Bishop Auckland.

The service aims to protect people and properties and prevent incidents, continue to improve its service in a sustainable way that offers value for money, and to invest in its workforce.

As well as responding to emergencies such as fire, flooding, road traffic collisions, animal rescue and missing persons searches, the service works in the community carrying out home fire safety checks and visits to schools to warn and inform people about potential dangers. The service is committed to supporting and working with children and young people and runs thriving cadet schemes at several stations in the area.

Connect with County Durham and Darlington Fire and Rescue Service

HMICFRS region and HMI

  • Her Majesty’s Inspector of Fire & Rescue Services (HMI): Andy Cooke is HMI for Durham and Darlington Fire and Rescue Service
  • HMICFRS region: The service is in HMICFRS’s Northern fire region

Contact Andy Cooke

HMICFRS’s role in inspecting this service

For over 160 years, Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary independently assessed and reported on the efficiency and effectiveness of police forces and policing, in the public interest.

In summer 2017, HMIC (now HMICFRS) took on inspections of England’s fire & rescue services, assessing and reporting on their efficiency, effectiveness and leadership.

Key facts – 2019/20

Service Area

938 square miles


0.64m people
up2% local 5 yr change


69% wholetime firefighters
31% on-call firefighters
0.69 per 1000 population local
0.57 national level
down9% local 5 yr change
down8% national 5 yr change


15 stations
26 fire engines


5.4 fire incidents per 1000 population local
2.7 national
1.8 non-fire incidents per 1000 population local
3.1 national
3.6 fire false alarms per 1000 population local
4.1 national


£29.81 firefighter cost per person per year
£24.53 firefighter cost per person per year (national)

Chief Fire Officer

Stuart Errington