HEROIC former city fire station officer Alan Davies, who was at the scene of the Aberfan disaster and Lea and Perrins fire in the 1960s, has died, aged 72.

During a long and accomplished career, the Worcester-born fireman received the Fire Brigade Long Service and Good Conduct Award.

Alongside colleague Lawson ‘Chick’ Fowles, he also received a Fire Authority Commendation for rescuing an unconscious lodger from an upstairs flat on Lowesmoor.

The 1966 Aberfan disaster, which saw Alan washing down the bodies of dead children for identification, lived with him for the rest of his life.

Following a heavy period of rain in the Welsh mining town, a water build-up in a coal tip caused it to suddenly slide downhill, engulfing the Pantglas Junior School and other buildings.

A total of 144 people were killed, including 116 children.

Alan was also one of 50 firemen who tackled a fire at Lea and Perrins sauce factory, on Midland Road, two years before.

In 1974, Alan was one of several firefighters who recovered the bodies of two colleagues killed in a fire at a former paper mill at Hurcott, Kidderminster.

In 1993, he also helped deal with the conflagration in Hereford at Sun Valley Poultry, where another two firefighters died.

Born in 1946, alongside his twin brother John, in Bromyard Road, St Johns, Worcester, Alan was educated at St Stephens School and then Samuel Southall.

And while his schoolmates were playing rugby and football, Alan took on weather observations for the school.

His interest in meteorology, along with radio technology, would endure throughout his life, though from an early age his heart was with the fire service.

At 16, he would ride his bike to the fire station in Copenhagen Street and watch activities, which were supported by the volunteer Auxiliary Fire Service (AFS).

In charge was Station Officer Stan ‘Kim’ Kimberley, who would later die rescuing a woman from the roof of the old Powick Hospital.

It was Kim who invited Alan onto the station and asked if wanted to join the AFS.

At 18, Alan joined the retained fire service and became a member of the Brigade’s ‘fire control’, handling emergency calls.

He went on to be a full-time fireman serving at Bromsgrove, Droitwich and Worcester, advancing to the rank of Station Officer.

After retiring from operational duties Alan became the brigade’s Communications Officer.

In 1971, Alan married Audrey and a few years later they moved to Meadow Road, Claines, where he would spend the rest of his life.

Alan had a deep regard for the doctor and district nurses who visited him during his illness.

With their help and Audrey’s dedication he was able to end his life at home as he wished, in a former fire service house and with old fire service colleagues not too far away.