GONE are the days when Salford Lads Club was just for boys -
teenage girls from the iconic club are learning life-saving
techniques thanks to firefighters from Salford Fire Station.
As part of Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service's (GMFRS)
ongoing work with the Ordsall club, a group of girls came to the
fire station on Tuesday, January 29 to learn British Heart
Foundation accredited Heartstart.
Watch Manager Matt Keogh said: "Since the summer of 2011,
firefighters from Salford Fire Station have been visiting the young
people at Salford Lads Club. We really wanted to do something
with the boys and girls there because they are great young
"We knew we could work together and since then, both the young
people and all the crews from Salford Fire Station have been
getting lots out of it. Around twelve of the girls had two
separate two hour sessions covering basic life support, the
recovery position and CPR.
"They really enjoyed learning about it and we made it fun
talking about scenarios they could find themselves in either at
school, the club or at home."
Salford Lads Club has always been iconic, but its young people
are looking to the future and are turning to firefighters as role
For 18 months, all watches at Salford Fire Station have been
consistently engaging with teenagers at the Ordsall club which
celebrates its 110th anniversary this year.
Matt said: "For 18 months we've been going down to the club on a
regular basis with the fire engine, chatting with the boys and
girls and getting to know them, talking to them about fire safety,
first aid and joining in with club activities every week.
"Hopefully they look at us now as friends as well as role
"Before Christmas a group from the club came to the station for
the first time and we showed them how we cut people out of the
wreckage of cars after a road traffic collision and now we're
teaching them life-saving techniques."
The club was founded in Ordsall in 1903 as a recreational club
for boys, and became known around the world in 1986 after it
featured on the front of The Smiths The Queen is Dead album
Niall Armsden, a volunteer at Salford Lads Club said: "It's been
great having the firefighters mentoring our young people because
they've really got such a lot out of it.
"Now they're learning first aid and other skills that will
really help them in life from visits to Salford Fire Station.
"It's made them think of their futures and some of them were
speaking to the firefighters about careers advice. They've all
learnt new things about CPR, fire and road safety and what GMFRS
firefighters and staff do other than put out fires.
"We get up to 300 young people using the club every week and
those that have worked with the firefighters all look up to them
and a couple of them have even said they now want to work for GMFRS
when they're older."
Perhaps the most famous youth group in the country, Salford Lads
Club offers the young people of Salford the chance to take part in
team building activities like football, table tennis and snooker
and teaches discipline through boxing training and jujitsu.
Chair of Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Authority,
Councillor David Acton said: "The work firefighters from Salford
Fire Station are doing with Salford Lads Club is absolutely
fantastic because it just shows how GMFRS and our crews and
stations are right at the heart of communities.
"GMFRS' purpose is to protect and improve the quality of life of
people in Greater Manchester and working in partnership with the
club does that and supplements the young people's programmes we run
"In the last two years GMFRS has successfully provided more than
1,000 young people who have come through our schemes in fire
stations with almost 3,000 academic qualifications and initiatives
like this help create opportunities for young people to help shape
them as valuable members of society."
To find out more about the programmes GMFRS provide for young
people go to /community_work.aspx