durham county council largeYoung firefighters, scout groups, police and air cadets from County Durham and Darlington who recently completed the Duke of Cornwall Community Safety Award will put their skills to the test next Saturday.

Exercise Levantine takes place at Bowburn Fire and Rescue Service Training Centre on July 16. Organised by Durham County Council’s Civil Contingencies Unit (CCU), it will test multi-agency response to flooding as part of the Local Resilience Forum.

The groups, who recently completed the award, all learned how they could help their local communities and families during emergency situations like flooding. As recognition for their achievements, they will use their skills and knowledge to best handle five different activities and scenarios during the exercise related to flooding and managing emergency response.

Other partners including Durham Constabulary, County Durham Fire and Rescue Service, the British Red Cross, the Met Office, the Environment Agency, RAYNET, the Military and event sponsors Northern Powergrid and Northern Gas Networks will all be taking part.

Cllr Joy Allen, cabinet member for safer communities said: “I’m delighted that so many of our young uniformed organisations in County Durham take community safety and the protection of their communities seriously enough to work for an award.

“It’s fitting their hard-work and dedication is rewarded and I hope they enjoy their experience working with our CCU and the other professional and emergency services.”     

Cllr Edward Bell, chairman of Durham County Council will be attending to meet some of the award recipients along with chief constable Mike Barton, chief fire officer Stuart Errington and Peter Bowes, deputy lieutenant County Durham.