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Fire Engines Photos

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Hartlepool's Open Day
Fire Engine Photos
No: 17665   Contributor: Chris Hall   Year: 2001   Manufacturers: Dennis, Scania   Country: United Kingdom
Hartlepool's Open Day

Hartlepool's Open Day on 24th June 2001 at Stranton. From the viewers left, the Machines are R248JNL (India 2/fn24) a Scania 94D 260/Emergency One WrT. H49KVN (India 5/fn 03) the much rebuilt Dennis CU/ET which had been new in 1990 and originally with experimental extending bodywork. Finally we have M227PHN a Dennis SS/J Dennis WrT(Golf 3/fn 47) from Billingham and on exhibition for the day. All machines are in their original light vermillion livery, and are still in service today albeit in their later 2003 dark red livery. M227PHN is still in vermillion as a Trainer/Reserve.
Picture added on 18 June 2009 at 06:14
add commentComments:
Good photo Chris. One question I have always mean't to ask is, why are these machines painted white at the front? I assume it's a visibility issue, just curious.

Added by Dave Lewis on 18 June 2009.
Hi Dave, Yes it was a visibility issue. In the early 70's a lot of orange streetlights were introduced to Teesside (as they were elsewhere)and the Fire Appliances were relatively difficult to see under them. Several ideas were mooted, including a plan to paint Teesside's appliances Yellow! The CFO happened to visit New York where he was impressed by the Red and White appliances there. When he came back, he introduced the now famous (and still current white fronts). The white areas varied considerably in the early days, several of the machines acquired from constituant brigades had very little white on them(sometimes a bumper bar, or a cab area).
The first machines to sport white in any quantity were a pair of AEC Mercurys WrL's (AXG2/29K) for the then new build station at Billingham in 1971.From the mid 70's all new machines had white frontal areas to their cabs, and this is continued today.
Around 1997, some machines recieved extra white areas to the wheel arches giving the machine a very Teutonic appearence. The current Dark Red livery introduced in 2003 with it's white embelishments and yellow dayglow stripes gives the vehicle a very effective and elegant appearence indeed. Most of the newer appliances (ie the Scanias and Sabres) have been painted, as have several of the specials.

Added by Chris Hall Teesside. UK. on 18 June 2009.
It's something to do with the white fronts being more visible under orange street lights. Think it came in about the 1960s. And the fact it looks good...

Hope this helps.

Added by Pete G on 18 June 2009.
Ah lads, the great Tyke Brigade tried white but went back to the true path! Coventry yellow was tried but dissapeared, one day, the men north of Catterick will come to their senses and get the spray guns out!!lol!

Added by John Stott on 19 June 2009.
The white fronts do nothing for me,,,,

Added by Pav on 19 June 2009.
Thanks very much for your responses. Very interesting, makes sense really! All the best.

Added by Dave Lewis on 19 June 2009.
Liveries form an emotive issue on any Transport whether it's a Bus,a Railway Locomotive or a Fire Engine.For myself, as far as Fire Engines go,the Cleveland Livery wins every time. The latest variant with it's dark red, white fronts and yellow dayglow stripes looks very functional and elegant. But that of course is just my opinion. The real reason is that the brigade's livery identifies an area you can relate to, ie 'it reminds me of home'. There is always a sense of pride, when looking through thousands of photographs, you discover a machine from your own area. Nostalgia and longing for home are powerful drugs!!

Added by Chris Hall Teesside. UK. on 19 June 2009.
Aye Chris you are right, but as far as Him Upstairs is concerned, we all know hes from Yorkshire! ( and he says they should be red!)

Added by John Stott on 20 June 2009.
Now John, assuming there's only one 'Him upstairs' (because the Greeks and Romans tell us that there are many 'Him upstairs') 'He' would realise that as he comes from that part of Yorkshire now in Cleveland (Middlesbrough and most of anywhere north of Thirsk), his approved colours for fire appliances, particularly on hallowed ground ie, Middlesbrough,is actually Red with white fronts.
These sacred colours have been further enhanced in recent years with extra areas of white and also now include beautiful yellow and blue reflective striping, which rather than make the appliance go faster, actually compliment further an already tasteful and elegant livery. Thus the Cleveland livery is clearly distinctive and superior to all those other 'mundane'overall red liveries seen elsewhere. Our livery is so good that we have even evaded those dreadfull Battenburg squares, and those micky mouse style red and white wheels that you could find in other parts of the North East during the 90's. Yes John, I can categorically state that the Cleveland livery is by far the best livery ever to adorn a fire appliance of any age anywhere (including Yorkshire).

By the way, the chaps around Catterick have this habit of painting everything in Military Green, so it's extremely unlikely that they will ever see the light.

Added by Chris Hall Teesside. UK. on 20 June 2009.
I loved that Chris! Apart from we know he has taken the form of flesh as Mr G. Boycott! A fact, the men of the RAF Fire School proudly displayed the true colour on the Catterick roundabout for many years until they were moved to Manston to take the truth to Kent. Cleveland is a creation of man and therfore cannot be recognised than anything else, along with their machines, which look like bread vans. Alas it will take some time for those northern parts to pick up the spray gun and return to the fold, as they now need to put stripes on their machines it shows they grow bored with their bread vans.So they flock to Halfords and stick stripes on everything that moves and call it smart.As the book says, it was, and shall be again. As a purist and follower of the true path I truly believe red will return!

Added by John Stott on 20 June 2009.
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