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Bob Blackman MP

Bob Blackman MPBob Blackman is the Conservative MP for Harrow East and presently serves as Joint Secretary of the prestigious 1922 Committee within Parliament. Bob was London Assembly Member for Brent and Harrow in 2004. Bob was also a member of Brent Council for nearly 24 years. During that time, he led the Conservative Group for 20 years and the Council for 6 years as well as being Deputy Leader of the Council for 4 years in a coalition.

Since being elected as a Member of Parliament in 2010, Bob has actively promoted the safety of buildings and became the Chairman to the Fire Safety and Rescue APPG in December 2021. Since this appointment, he has regularly written to Secretaries of State and relevant Governmental departments, made contributions in the Chamber and met with influential representatives of the sector to help promote the UK as a world leader in Fire Safety and Rescue.

Chair, Trustee

Jim Fitzpatrick 

Jim worked for London Fire Brigade from 1974-1997. Following this he moved into politics becoming the MP for Poplar from 1997-2019, during this time Jim held multiple roles including Fire Minister and Road Safety Minister. Jim became Non-Executive Director of the Fire Protection Association in March 2020 and has been Chair of FIRE AID since 2015.


Gary Bennett, Treasurer and Trustee 

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Gary worked in the fire service as a Station Officer for 12 years with the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service before completing his MSc in Fire Engineering and starting his own company in 2004, which now employs over 12 people. Gary is the founder of SERA who started volunteering for one of our FIRE AID members, Blythswood Care in 1998 where he drove vehicles of aid each year on their behalf into Eastern Europe.


Ian Greenman – Trustee

Ian Greenman profile pictureIan worked in the Fire & Rescue Service (FRS) for 34 years, initially in Mid Glamorgan Fire Brigade and then in South Wales FRS. He worked in many different roles and finished as Head of Training & Development for the Service. He retired in 2020. He has a Master’s degree in Management and is a qualified Teacher. He has also completed the Executive Leadership Programme with Warwick University and gained a Post Graduate Strategic Leadership Certificate.

He has a long association with the UKRO having first competed some twenty three years ago, then became an Assessor at UK, International and World level. He then moved into a role of Marketing lead for the Charity before stepping into his current role of Trustee and Director for Organisational Development, Marketing & Communications (ODMC) early in 2020.

He also assists with WRO work and has been a member of the Marketing & Finance Working group for the past eighteen months.

He has an active interest and passion for all aspects of road and safety education and is keen to share knowledge and increase awareness amongst all key partners in the Rescue environment. His current role with UKRO has seen him develop some key initiatives and partnership agreements in advancing professional rescue.


Steve Apter, Trustee

Steve Apter profile pictureSteve started his career in 1991 as a retained firefighter with the Isle of Wight Fire Service and climbed the ranks, becoming Chief Fire Officer in 2011. In 2015, following a strategic partnership between the services, Steve was appointed Director of Community Safety and Resilience with Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service.  He was seconded into East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service as Deputy Chief Fire Officer in 2015.

In December 2016 he was appointed Deputy Commissioner with London Fire Brigade (LFB), one of the largest Fire and Rescue Services in the world.  Steve led the strategic response of LFB to the Westminster Bridge terror attack and was responsible for the strategic response arrangements and Gold response to the Grenfell Tower tragedy.

Steve has a Master’s degree in Leadership and completed the Executive Leadership programme for strategic leaders in the Fire Service.  In addition, he has been a volunteer with UKRO (and its previous guises) for over 25 years and was Chair in 2010 to 2018. In 2017 UKRO became a registered Charity. Steve was Chair of the World Rescue Organisation from 2013-2015.  He is passionate about international development and advancing professional rescue, and is proud of the role UKRO plays with colleagues from other aid organisations to support the global road safety agenda.


Jane Eason, Trustee

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