Haddington’s David McManus shows off restored fire engines

David looking through the wheeled escape ladder of Dennis Big 4, 1935. Picture: Gordon Fraser

David looking through the wheeled escape ladder of Dennis Big 4, 1935. Picture: Gordon Fraser

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FORMER retained firefighter David McManus, who was based in Haddington for 26 years, shows off his collection of restored engines.

David retired in 2013 following knee surgery but for many years he has collected fire service memorabilia, including period uniforms and the emergency vehicles themselves.

David works on Dennis Big 4, 1935. Picture: Gordon Fraser

David works on Dennis Big 4, 1935. Picture: Gordon Fraser

The engines include a Dennis F28 1964, Dennis Big 4 1935, Dennis Alexander 1991 and a Dennis Rapier 1995.

David said: “The Dennis F28 1964 was acquired in 2013 from Colchester. It served its time in Northern Ireland and, when retired from service, was left to rot in a yard.

“In 2000, it was discovered by a gentleman from Leeds and shipped back to be restored. This was a labour of love over a 13-year period and sadly had to be sold when the owner fell into ill health.

“Dennis Big 4 1935 was acquired from a lovely gent in Oswestry, Shropshire, and was in need of a full restoration. It was recognised by the Transport Trust at an award ceremony in London where Prince Michael of Kent, patron of the trust spent an afternoon with guests and presented the awards.

David with his restored fire engines. Picture: Gordon Fraser

David with his restored fire engines. Picture: Gordon Fraser

“The Dennis Alexander 1991 is now converted to a limousine with lights and sound system. It is used for weddings, parties and community events. Dennis Rapier 1995 is a fully functioning fire appliance.”

Classic Engine Events is a non-profit making venture. Any money made or donated goes to the Fire Brigade Benevolent Fund Home in Cumbria.

Visit www.classicengine events.co.uk for details on hiring the vehicles.