Firefighter to get fundraising honour

Bury Times: Peter Griffiths, second right with New York marathon colleagues, from left, Leon Dally, Rob McDonagh, Mark Haslam and Dean Hanley Peter Griffiths, second right with New York marathon colleagues, from left, Leon Dally, Rob McDonagh, Mark Haslam and Dean Hanley

A FIREFIGHTER from Unsworth is to be honoured for his outstanding efforts to charity.

Peter Griffiths, aged 44, who is a member of blue watch at Heywood fire station, is to get a ‘Beyond the Call of Duty’ award.

He was nominated for the accolade by Lesley Wardle, a volunteer fundraiser with Operation Florian, for his prolonged commitment to the charity.

Peter was singled out for the way he has consistently gone out of his way to help Operation Florian over the years.

Lesley said: “I thought it would be nice to give someone like Pete the recognition that he deserves and I am made up that he has been selected to win the award.”

Last month, he travelled to the USA with four fellow firefighters to take part in the New York Marathon which resulted in him scooping the joint Lion Apparel and Fire Magazine award.

But an eleventh-hour injury — a dislocated kneecap — forced him to miss out on the run, which he had previously completed in 2010 and 2011.

Peter was still able to give support to his fellow runners Dean Hanley, who lives in Bury, together with Leon Dally, Mark Haslam and Rob McDonagh, who was the quickest to finish in a time of three hours 32 minutes.

They all completed the marathon wearing vests in memory of fallen colleague Stephen Hunt, aged 38, from Radcliffe, who died while tackling a blaze in Manchester in July.

Steve McGuirk, Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service’s county fire officer, said: “His dedication goes well beyond the call of duty and he has made a contribution that helps to make a difference for some of those less fortunate communities around the world.”

Peter said: “I was gobsmacked to learn I had been nominated for an award like this. I feel very humble, as I’m just doing my bit to try and help worthy causes.”

n Operation Florian is named after the Patron Saint of firefighters, St Florian. The charity was formed in 1995 to promote the protection of life among communities in need around the world, providing equipment and training to improve firefighting and rescue capabilities.

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