West Sussex Fire & Rescue Service is launching an innovative charity art project, transforming retired operational fire helmets into unique art pieces. The service invites local and UK-wide artists to unleash their creativity by submitting design proposals.
The project will select 25 standout designs to be artistically rendered onto the helmets. These transformed helmets will be showcased at Worthing Town Hall and later auctioned. All funds raised from the auction will benefit The Fire Fighters Charity, supporting the welfare of fire and rescue service personnel and their families.
Artists are encouraged to present their distinctive and imaginative ideas by February 2, 2024, for a chance to see their artwork adorn an actual fire helmet. These helmets, rich in history, have been part of real firefighting missions and worn by firefighters in the line of duty.
Acting Chief Fire Officer Mark Andrews expressed enthusiasm for the initiative: “This project is a fantastic way to repurpose these helmets while supporting a vital charity. Following the success of Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service’s ‘Ashes to Art’ campaign, we are excited to witness the creative transformations our fire helmets will undergo.”
Louise Furneaux, Community Fundraiser at The Fire Fighters Charity, added: “I’m delighted to see Ashes to Art return in 2024, once again combining treasured former fire helmets with unique designs by local artists.
“On behalf of everyone at The Fire Fighters Charity, I want to thank everyone involved in organising this fantastic event. We can’t wait to see the finished designs – all of which will be auctioned off in aid of us and in support of the vital work we do, helping members of our fire service community be at their best.”
To submit your design concept, please email FRSMedia@westsussex.gov.uk. Submissions can be in any format you like (such as a photograph, digital illustration, or sketch) of the design that you would like to recreate on one of the helmets. All designs must be submitted by 2 February 2024.