Press release

Chief Fire Officer John Beard announces retirement from Cumbria Fire & Rescue Service

Cumbria’s Chief Fire Officer John Beard has announced his upcoming retirement from Cumbria Fire & Rescue Service.

John Beard

John has served for 32 years within the fire and rescue sector and has held leadership roles within Cumbria Fire & Rescue Service for nearly five years, initially as the Assistant Chief Fire Officer and for the last two and a half years as the Chief Fire Officer. 

As Chief Fire Officer, John has been responsible for the provision of emergency response, business safety and community safety services to nearly 500,000 people across the county of Cumbria and its visitors.

John will step down as Chief Fire Officer in July. A recruitment process led by the Office of the Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner is underway to recruit his successor.

Chief Fire Officer John Beard said: 

“It has been a great privilege to have served as Chief Fire Officer for the people of Cumbria for the last two and a half years. 

“Cumbria is a great Fire and Rescue Service, and I am proud to have led teams who face difficult situations daily, work hard to protect those who need us and to prevent incidents.

“I would like to thank all my colleagues for their determination to make Cumbria a truly safer place, whilst also making the Service a great place to work.”

Cumbria’s Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner, Peter McCall said:

“Chief Fire Officer John Beard has, of course, been the lynchpin of Cumbria Fire & Rescue Service for nearly five years, with half of this time spent leading the Service.

“He has been a dedicated leader, passionate about his commitment and service to both the residents of Cumbria and his workforce, he is a popular leader and know he will be sorely missed as Chief Fire Officer.

“John has played a vital role in the complexities of transfer of governance responsibility from Cumbria County Council to my office, but he has always acted in the best interest of delivering a quality service.

“I know John has made many achievements in his time at Cumbria Fire & Rescue Service which reflects in his leadership of a dedicated team of Fire Officers and Staff.

“We, in Cumbria, rightly hold our Fire and Rescue Service in high regard - much is due to John, his service and leadership, I will be sorry to see John retire but wish him the very best to him and his family as he starts a new chapter in retirement.”