London Fire Brigade

London Fire Brigade firefighter Jessica New celebrated her 21st birthday by rescuing a kitten from a house fire in Wembley.

Jessica has been a firefighter for just two months and the blaze on Page Avenue was the first house fire she has attended and only the second time she’s worn breathing apparatus at a live incident.

She said: “Alongside Firefighter Liam Cronin, we went in to tackle the fire on the second floor. We were told everyone was outside so our priority was to get the fire under control as quickly as possible, but when we came out we were told there was a kitten inside so we went back to find him.”

When they went back in, they found the kitten in a bedroom hiding underneath the bed. Dog owner Jessica wasn’t sure how easy it would be to get the kitten out.

She added: “I knelt down and called out to him and to my surprise he walked over. We took him outside and he was perfectly fine although understandably very scared. I’ve never seen anyone as delighted as the owners were when we handed him over.”

Jessica said she became interested in joining the fire service around two years ago and joined Wembley Red Watch on Boxing Day last year.

“I’m loving every minute of it and this job doesn’t feel like work,” she said. “I’ve always wanted to work in the services in a role that looks after people.

“I’d say to any young women thinking about a job in the fire service to just go for it. It is the ideal job for anyone who likes to work in a team.”

The fire happened on February 8. Two women left the property before the London Fire Brigade arrived. Around half of the second floor was damaged by the fire.

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