A SECOND Nether Stowey fireman has retired after giving more than 40 years’ service to both his village community and to Bridgwater.

Robert Wilkins, known as Bob, joined the fire service in Nether Stowey in 1980, following in the footsteps of his firefighting father. 

Five years later he transferred to the Bridgwater station, where he has served ever since.

Starting as a regular fireman, Mr Wilkins became a watch commander 20 years ago.

He was presented with the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee Medal in 2022 in recognition of his long service with what is now Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue (DSFR).

Now, Mr Wilkins has retired after 42 years and 10 months of service.

A Bridgwater spokesperson for DSFR said in an online tribute to Mr Wilkins: “Thank you for your help, support, and service over the years, from all of Bridgwater retained past and present. You will be truly missed.”

Mr Wilkins’ Nether Stowey colleagues said: “Congratulations on your retirement Bob, great achievement 43 years service to Bridgwater and Nether Stowey Fire Station. You will be missed by so many, enjoy your life now, all the best.”

Last month, Nether Stowey firefighter Richard Nurton retired after more than 30 years serving the village and its surrounding communities.

Mr Nurton joined the brigade in Nether Stowey in June, 1993, to realise his ‘boyhood dream’.