Hatfield firefighters’ moving tribute at funeral for retired fire officer

PUBLISHED: 10:00 20 March 2016

The day crew at Hatfield fire station stand to attention

The day crew at Hatfield fire station stand to attention


Firefighters stood to attention in a tribute parade during the funeral of a retired fire officer.

Leonard AmblerLeonard Ambler

Leonard Ambler, described as a ‘caring, honest and sincere’ man, died on Tuesday, February 23 at the age of 88, following a short illness.

As his hearse passed Hatfield Fire Station on Monday, March 14, firefighters saluted as a mark of respect to Mr Ambler, who became sub-officer of the station when it opened in 1964.

He served the fire brigade at different fire stations for 34 years before his retirement in 1983. At the time of his death he lived in Welwyn Garden City with his wife June, 85.

His eulogy said: “He was a devoted husband, dad, granddad, and great granddad.

Leonard Ambler when he was youngerLeonard Ambler when he was younger

“Everyone that met Len loved his soft, kind and gentle approach to life. He was patient, caring, honest and a sincere man.”

Mr Ambler is survived by June and their three sons, Keith, Bruce and Colin, as well as seven grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.

Before working at Hatfield Fire Station, Mr Ambler joined the London Fire Brigade in 1949, working at Kingsland Fire Station in the East End which was reported to be one of the busiest stations in London.

Mr and Mrs Ambler then moved to Stevenage in 1955, where he became leading fireman at Letchworth Fire Station.

The funeral cortege passes the fire stationThe funeral cortege passes the fire station

In 1958, between the births of his two eldest sons, he was promoted to sub-officer and took over a watch at Potters Bar Fire Station before moving to Hatfield for the remainder of his career.

He was awarded the British Empire Medal by the Queen in 1981, and also received the Queen’s Silver Jubilee Medal for his services to the community.

His eulogy said: “He was a true officer and gentleman and will be greatly missed by all, but has left us all with such happy memories.”

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