On Call Firefighter (Retained) Recruitment Process

Please see details of the application process below, if you are still interested in applying for an on call role, you will need to fill in an 'expression of interest' form which can be found on the right hand side of this page...

We are looking for individuals to be On Call firefighters within Gloucestershire. Have you got what it takes?

The On Call element of Gloucestershire Fire and Rescue Service are fundamental to our community safety and emergency response across the county. On Call firefighters are a group of community-spirited men and women who live or work within a reasonable response time of their local Fire Station and are available to respond to emergencies within their communities and across the county.

Selection Process

The selection process consists of Ability and Practical Tests, which are job related tasks relevant to a firefighter's role. There are several stages of the recruitment process, which are:

Application Form

Candidates will be asked to complete a detailed application form which will be assessed against the national criteria standards to be returned by the deadline specified.

Many candidates fail the application stage because they do not read or follow the instructions. The instructions are there to advise you what we are looking for from candidates and help you to sell yourself, so please read them carefully.

Once applications have been returned, a number of successful applicants will be invited back to undertake a series of selection tests to include:

Mental Agility Test

This stage requires the candidate to complete and pass a written test.

Mental agility example questions:

1) What is the next number in this series?  1,  3,  6,  10,  15,  21...

2) Nose is to Smell as an Eye is to...  A) Hearing   B) Taste   C) Sight   D) Touch

3) Which word does not belong in this list?  A) Square   B) Triangle   C) Circle   D) Cube

4) James had £5 pocket money. He spent 20% on crisps and ½ on stickers. How much does he have left?

5) Which number is smaller?  A) 1/4   B) 0.2   C) 1.02   D) 1/3

6) What is the 4th letter of the month before September?


This is designed to assess your ability to become a firefighter. If successful, you will be invited to attend an interview.

The tests are:

  • A ladder climb - this test is designed to assess confidence and co-ordination whilst working at heights. Candidates will be attached to a safety line
  • Ladder extension
  • Enclosed space - this involves negotiating through a measured crawl way wearing a Breathing Apparatus facemask within a set time
  • Equipment carry

Fitness Assessment

There will be an assessment to see if you already have the right level to train as a Firefighter, or give you advice and support on how to reach the standard required.

Chester treadmill assessment

25kg bar lift

Group discussion

You will be asked to take part in a group discussion with other candidates. The discussion will be based around the role of an On Call Fire fighter within the community. This will be a great opportunity to demonstrate your excellent communication skills.


The interview stage allows you to discuss your personal values and skills that will make you an effective On Call Fire fighter. During the interview you will be asked a number of questions for you to answer. These questions can range from your understanding of the role of an On Call Fire fighter to the qualities that you hold to carry out the role.


If successful in the above stages you will be required to undergo a full medical examination by the Service Occupational Health Department. The purpose of the medical is to assess your general level of health and to ensure you are fit to take on the role of a firefighter. You will be asked to complete a questionnaire covering your medical history and will then be subject to a series of tests including an assessment of your aerobic capacity known as a VO2 max measurement. Your medical records may need to be obtained from your GP.


An offer of employment is conditional on satisfactory references and Criminal Records Bureau Clearance.

Expression Of Interest

So if you're looking for a new challenge and want to make a difference then why not fill in our on-line form to find out more, or please pop into your local community fire station during their weekly training night at any time through the year.

Work Permit (Asylum and Immigration Act 1996) The Service is required by law to ensure that any persons it employs has the right or permission to reside or work in the United Kingdom. Any person to be offered employment will be required to produce relevant original documentation when requested.


Please take a look at our 'Frequently Asked Questions'.


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