A firefighter has put out his last fire after serving the community for more than 30 years.

Bridport firefighter and crew manager Nick Tuck has retired after 34 years’ service with the brigade.

Mr Tuck joined the fire service on March 27, 1984, because he wanted to help his community.

Mr Tuck said: “I wanted to do something for the community in Bridport. The job has always been about the community and community spirit – we got to know everyone in the area and got on well with everyone we met. I will miss the people, the comradery and the teamwork.”

As crew manager, Mr Tuck had the lives of many people in his hands; not just members of the public, but his crew as well.

“There’s a lot of responsibility,” he said. “You have to make massive decisions quickly. When you are in charge of those six people you want them to go home to their families. You don’t know what you’re going to come across. There is tragedy sometimes, and that’s very upsetting, but there have been lots of happy endings.”

Mr Tuck is looking forward to spending more time with his family, including wife Julie, who he says has been supportive throughout his career.

“I have missed many parties and Christmases but Julie has been very supportive,” said Mr Tuck. “My main support is my family and they do worry about you when you’re out on the job. I’ll be spending more time at home and I’m looking forward to doing some walking and going out socialising.”

Mr Tuck was presented with his certificate and a plaque from Craig Baker, area manager for Dorset. Firefighters from all three stations in West Dorset also attended the presentation, thanking Nick for his dedication and commitment.

Mr Baker said: “Nick has shown outstanding dedication and commitment to his local community in Bridport for more than 30 years, and our grateful thanks go not just to him but also his family. Being an on-call firefighter demands sacrifices not just of the individual but also their loved ones, and that support is absolutely vital. It was my pleasure to attend Nick’s last drill night and, on behalf of everyone at Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service, I wish him a long and happy retirement.”

Mr Tuck added: “It was a real honour that members of Lyme, Charmouth and Beaminster came to say goodbye.”