Meet Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service

Please read our information on how we are supporting residents and businesses, as well as information on affected services.

Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service employs 700* people. The service is run by Cornwall Council.

*Figures updated 9 December 2020

Find out who we are as an organisation, and meet our key people.

How we work

As you might imagine, our organisational structure is complicated. We split it into the following areas:

  • Firefighters
    • Wholetime Firefighters - (24hrs)
    • On-Call Firefighters
  • Officers and Operational Managers
  • Tri-Service Safety Officers
  • Critical Control Operators – our 999 call handlers
  • Non-uniformed and non-operational – our essential support team


We use a combination of full and part-time staff and on-call firefighters. On-call firefighters carry out firefighting duties in addition to their usual employment.

We currently have :

  • 167* Wholetime Firefighters
  • 400* On-Call Firefighters-this figure fluctuates throughout the year due to retention and recruitment

Officers and Operational Managers

We currently have 22 Officers and Operational Managers.

Tri-Service Safety Officers

The Tri-Service Safety Officer (TSSO) is an innovative and flexible role. It combines the police, ambulance and fire and rescue service.

We currently have 7* Tri-Service Safety Officers

Critical Control Operators

Critical Control staff:

  • take emergency 999 calls
  • find out details of incidents
  • send fire engines
  • deploy our resources to emergencies

They also use a six-watch system but have a different rank structure.

We currently have 22* Critical Control Operators

Non-uniformed and non-operational staff

It's not just firefighters who help make Cornwall a safer county. We have a range of non-uniformed and non-operational staff. They work behind the scenes to support our front-line services, including:

  • IT
  • Finance
  • Procurement
  • Community Safety officers

Meet our senior management team

Chief Fire Officer

Kathryn Billing

As of 10 May 2021 Kathryn has taken up the role of Chief Fire Officer.

Brief career history:
  • Joined Cornwall County Fire Brigade (as the service was formerly known), as a retained firefighter in January 2000
  • Has served across teams and commands throughout the service
  • Has a Masters in Management and BEng Fire Engineering Degree
  • Member of the Institute of Fire Engineers
  • Leads on National Fire Chief Council work for Sector Led Improvement and Equality, Diversity, Inclusion

Follow Kathryn on Twitter at

Deputy Chief Fire Officer, Head of Service Operations

Mark Hewitt

Brief career history
  • Joined Cornwall County Fire Brigade (as the service was formerly known), as a firefighter in September 1992.
  • Spent 5 years as a firefighter at Bodmin Community Fire Station
  • Completed the Fire and Rescue Service (FRS) Executive Leadership Programme in 2016.
  • Member of the Institute of Fire Engineer
  • Member of the Firefighter Safety Special Interest Group
  • Leads on safeguarding within the Service
  • 1 September 2019 - 10 May 2021, Mark took up the role of Temporary Interim Chief Fire Officer.

Follow Mark on Twitter at

Temporary Assistant Chief Fire Officer, G7 Planning and Response 

Antony Bartlett

Assistant Chief Fire Officer, Head of Service Development and Improvement

Vicky Wallens-Hancock

Vicky was appointed as Assistant Chief Officer in 2017.

Brief career history:
  • Joined Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service in 2005 as an analyst
  • Masters in Social Research (MSc) and a Level 7 qualification in Strategic Leadership.
  • Vicky leads the Service Support functions. She is responsible for ensuring efficient, effective and safe service delivery. This is done through the provision of:
    • buildings
    • fleet equipment and engineering
    • health and safety
    • training
    • people and organisational development
    • service policy
    • staff wellbeing
    • risk based planning
    • intelligence
    • programme management
    • communication and engagement
    • information management and systems
    • quality assurance
    • local and national resilience
    • business continuity

Follow Victoria on Twitter at

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