All of the IWFBF publications below are easily accessible to order by clicking on the hyperlink below which will take you direct to Damon Corr's publishing page of the Blurb website. All publications are available in either paperback or hardback (image-wrap) to suit your preference and budget. Where stated, some can also be downloaded for far lesser cost as a file compatible with Kindle Fire devices or Apple iPad.

The profits from all IWFBF publications are forwarded to the Firefighters Charity. Non-IWFBF publications that do not contribute to the Charity will be stated in the description and are located separately at the bottom of the page.

Thank you for your interest in the Federation and support of the Firefighters Charity.


In previous volumes I have told the story of Isle of Wight firefighting from 1850 to 1938, a period in which firefighting was done by fire brigades formed of firemen, with few exceptions.

In 1939 the impacts of the Air Raid Precautions Act and the Fire Brigades Act was vast. The former Act created organisations on a national scale that caused unprecedented national and local change.

Until 1938 the environment of the fire was a place for firemen only. The fire-ground was sacrosanct and within it the firemen untouchable. In 1939 the fire-ground opened its cordons and allowed others in. A myriad of ARP sub-organisations had not only a right but an expectation to enter emergency incidents and save life. With colossal suddenness the local brigades were compelled to work alongside the massed elements of civil defence.

A historical reflection of firefighting in 1939 must capture the true essence of the society that prepared to fight fires as it prepared for, and engaged, in war. It was also the year that the Island was damned by the portent of a calf with two heads.

This was 1939.

"When the National Fire Service was formed, the Home Secretary promised that when it was all over we'd get our fire brigades back."

The Home Office broke that promise. By the end of the Second World War a revised Fire Services Act compelled the creation of county fire brigades. The borough, town and parish brigades were never to return.

Throughout the between-the-wars period the Island's fire chiefs and men worked hard to learn new skills, adapt to motorised engines and pumps, swap their iconic brass helmets for safer leather patterns and evolve their trade beyond anything previously experienced in preparation for the anticipated war. Little did they know that those events, for which they so arduously endeavoured, would, for their fiercely proud brigades, mean the beginning of the end.

Volume 3 of the Isle of Wight's firefighting history is now available at Blurb.

This second volume of the history of Isle of Wight firefighting follows the characters from Ready When Wanted in to a new century, through the Second Boer War, times of peace and great technological change in firefighting until the crippling effect of the First World War; both at home and abroad.

Apple iBook store users can buy direct from;






The first volume of Isle of Wight firefighting history was the culmination of many years of research and literally thousands of items from which to create an entertaining, educational and at times comical look at the Island's firemen, the political mood that affected them and the incidents they attended in the mid to late Victorian era. 

The first printing was available from November 2017 until March 2018. A second edition, with some amendments, and to be frank some production improvements is now available in the new cover seen on the left.

The plan for the cover change is that a person building up the collection of the books will place them side by side on a shelf and the spines will represent the central colour scheme of the Long Service and Good Conduct Medal Ribbon.

Colin Weeks was the teenaged son of the Mayor of Ryde when he joined the local section of the Auxiliary Fire Service (later the National Fire Service, Region 6, Fire Force 14d) initially as a clerk to assist Chief Officer Max Heller.

During his service he kept a diary of events, some of which make uncomfortable reading as they involve unimaginable happenings within the streets and places that today's residents know so well. There's also a hint of the writer's irreverant humour and examples of the kind of banter that all who've spent time in service with others will find familiar.

The diary was to end very suddenly. Years of painstaking research uncovered the reason.

Damon Corr introduces and closes this reproduction of Colin's war diary.

With Paget's Horse to the Front by Imperial Yeomany Trooper Cosmo Rose-Innes follows the author's adventures during the Second Boer War in South Africa. 

To find out why reproducing this aged publication was of interest and how it relates to a fascinating character of Isle of Wight society, please take a look at the first article submitted in the IWFBF's Military Interest Section... To The Stars.

Why Blurb?

Many people have asked me why I use the Blurb publishing service. I appreciate that books from Blurb are generally priced higher than comparable publications found in High Street stores and that each purchase attracts an unwelcome post and packaging fee.

My reasons for favouring this system are as follows;

*Firstly I have great faith in Blurb's production quality and their freely available software allows me to not only produce the content but have complete control over the layout and overall appearance of every page of every production.

*The Blurb philosophy enables people that have something to write to reach their intended audience without being scrutinised commercially by third parties with no interest but profit.

*Blurb allows me to set a constant profit per purchase that creates funds for the Firefighters Charity. Although Blurb's base cost may fluctuate with the availability of materials and production costs, the donation to the Charity per purchase remains constant.

*The only investment by me is the time, effort and personal cost in researching and writing the content of each publication. This began as a hobby that I've utilised to assist the Charity who assisted me when I needed them. I am not a businessman, I'm a firefighter.

*Nowhere in the world is there a row of shelves loaded with my books awaiting order and distribution. There is therefore no risk of capital investment by me or others and no unnecessary waste of production resources and materials. Every book ordered is a bespoke item which is unfortunately reflected in the cost but ensures my dealings in the commercial world are as clean and waste free as they could possibly be.

A good friend of mine who is a successful businessman once suggested to me that there could be a commercial success in adopting a different approach. I don't doubt him for one second as he knows his field, but it's not mine and I don't want an enthralling hobby with a philanthropic objective to be overshadowed by commercial pressures. 

I hope you appreciate my reasons and I apologise that this dictates a greater cost to you as the buyer but please do so in the knowledge that by buying you are helping members of the fire and rescue service family and at the same time not supporting mass production and waste. 


In 2009 I wrote a booklet as a fundraiser, one of a series of local history productions in order to assist the Historic Ryde Society. Although further information has been discovered in subsequent research, this booklet stands as a fair description, from one fireman's perspective, of the events before, during and after the infamous Cowes Blitz of 4/5 May 1942.


Still available from the Society's website for a nominal cost it may be of interest to those that read Colin's diary and wish to know more. Click on the link to the Historic Ryde Society above to access their online shop. 


Available from Historic Ryde Society


Note; this is not an IWFBF publication, profits from sales are those of the Historic Ryde Society.; Registered Charity No. 1153947.