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services to make everyone safer

Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service

Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service serves a resident population of over 1 million, divided between the five constituent councils of Gateshead, Newcastle, North Tyneside, South Tyneside and Sunderland in the North East of England. The service has 17 fire stations.

The population density of the area is comparable to that of other metropolitan areas, and accounts for 43 percent of the North East’s population in just six percent of the total land area. Of the 1.1 million dwellers in the area, 4.14 percent over the age of three years (44,000) are of minority ethnic origin with primary languages including Bengali, Cantonese, French, Farsi, Hindi, Kurdish, Punjabi and Urdu.

In addition to Tyne and Wear’s two major cities, the area boasts two large football stadiums, numerous museums and art galleries, three universities and several higher education colleges. The county has a range of well-developed transport links.

Traditional employment areas of shipbuilding, coal mining and heavy industries have declined significantly over the last 25 years, causing a changing risk profile, and changing unemployment rates. Today, many of the traditional industries have been replaced by modern industrial developments and service-based organisations.

Connect with Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service

HMICFRS region and HMI

  • Her Majesty’s Inspector of Fire & Rescue Services (HMI): Andy Cooke is HMI for Tyne and Wear 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 has 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

208 square miles


1.14m people
up2% local 5 yr change


98% wholetime firefighters
2% on-call firefighters
0.53 per 1000 population local
0.57 national level
down12% local 5 yr change
down8% national 5 yr change


17 stations
24 fire engines


6.2 fire incidents per 1000 population local
2.7 national
2.8 non-fire incidents per 1000 population local
3.1 national
5.7 fire false alarms per 1000 population local
4.1 national


£28.32 firefighter cost per person per year
£24.53 firefighter cost per person per year (national)

Chief Fire Officer

Chris Lowther