Duty of Care

In the event of a fire either during a service or other function then Churchwardens, Sidesmen, Welcomers and/or Hosts have a Duty of Care:

  • Raise the alarm
  • Evacuate the building
  • Summon the Fire Service

Raise the alarm

There are no Fire Alarm Systems in St Wilfrid’s or St John’s and the only practicable way to raise the alarm is to shout as loudly as possible:


Evacuate the building

Without taking any risk that might lead to personal harm:

  1. Open external doors (both leaves if applicable)
  2. Move about the building encouraging people to evacuate the building calmly and to gather at the Fire Assembly Point
  3. Establish that no one is left inside the building (including the Tower at St Wilfrid’s).


    Summon the Fire Service

    Dial 999 and ask for the Fire Service:

    1. St Wilfrid's Church BD23 6BP is located at the northern end of Burnsall village, alongside the B6160
    2. St John's Church BD23 6DQ is located at the eastern end of Appletreewick village, a hundred metres from the New Inn pub
    3. When you are not certain that the building has been evacuated completely INFORM THE FIRE SERVICES immediately on arrival.

    Fire Extinguishers

    Fire extinguishers are RED and the colours stated, which identify the type of extinguisher, refer to the background colour of the label.

    The locations and types of the fire extinguishers are shown in Appendix A.

    Fire extinguishers are provided to safeguard evacuation - you are not a firefighter.

    To operate a fire extinguisher first pull out the pin!


    Cream label

    Fires involving solids and burning liquids, such as oil

    Grip the hose firmly pull the trigger and spray the foam over the flames to smother the fire.

    For fires involving liquids, do not aim the jet straight into the liquid. Where the liquid on fire is contained, point the jet at the edge of the containment or on a nearby surface above the burning liquid then allow the foam to build up and flow across the liquid to smother the flames.



    Blue label

    Fires involving organic solids, liquids such as grease, fats, oil

    Grip the hose firmly and point the jet at the base of the flames, pull the trigger and, with a rapid sweeping motion, drive the fire away from you until all the flames are out.

    Special note - safe on live electrical equipment, although powder does not penetrate the spaces in equipment easily and the fire may re-ignite.

    Carbon Dioxide

    Black Label (and horn on extinguisher)

    Fires involving live electrical equipment

    Pull the discharge horn so that it is pointing downwards at about 45° and direct it at the base of the flames, pull the trigger, keep the discharge moving across the area of the fire.

    Do NOT hold the horn during discharge as your hand may become frozen to it!

    Electrical Isolation

    There may be a need to inform Fire Services about the isolation of electrical power. See the location drawings in Appendix B.

    St Wilfrid’s

    DB1 located in an alcove in the south wall – on the right when approaching the South Chapel.

    St John’s

    CON 1 in the cupboard in the Store behind the Vestry.

    Emergency Lighting

    The churches are historic buildings. Emergency Lighting is installed at St John’s but no provision has been made for emergency lighting at St Wilfrid’s.

    At St Wilfrid’s:

    1. Three powerful wind-up torches are provided for use in the unlikely event of a failure of the lighting (with or without a fire event).
    2. A torch is located in the cupboard with the hymn books; another is kept in a drawer in the Vestry and another in the Ringing Room in the Tower.
    3. The torches are charged up but can be recharged by winding the handle smoothly at a constant medium speed for a minute or so.
    4. The torches are fully described in Appendix C

    Fire Assembly Points

    There are two Fire Assembly Points at St Wilfrid’s:

    1. The Lychgate
    2. The Churchyard Gate on Rectory Lane

    The Fire Assembly Point at St John’s is:

    The street outside.

    When you arrive at the Fire Assembly Point ask around and make sure everyone is accounted for; this is particularly important if you cannot be absolutely certain that everyone has been evacuated. Do not allow anyone to re-enter the building. When the Fire Services arrive inform the crew chief (White Helmet) that either the building is evacuated completely OR that you cannot account for everybody.

    The Risks

    It is extremely unlikely that a fire will occur when the church is in use but it is important that, in the event, you know what to do.

    Do NOT attempt to tackle a fire yourself. Your responsibility is to evacuate the building safely.


    Location of Fire Extinguishers at St Wilfrid’s


    Location of Fire Extinguishers at St John’s


    Location of Electrical Incomer at St Wilfrid’s


    Location of Electrical Incomer at St John’s


    Dynamo Torch Light


    • Environmentally friendly light.
    • Turning the generating handle for 10 seconds provides up to 3 minutes of light.
    • Two or more hours of light when the internal battery is fully charged.
    • The battery may be conserved by reducing the number of LEDs that are illuminated.


    • Each press of the switch cycles the torch through the available features back to ‘Off’.


    To recharge the internal battery:

    • When charging the torch make sure that it is turned off.
    • Pull out the generator handle.
    • Rotate the generator handle at a steady speed neither too quickly (excessive speed may damage the internal parts) nor too slowly in one direction only.
    • The generator handle may be turned either clockwise or anticlockwise.
    • A light will illuminate to indicate that the battery is charging.
    • 10 seconds of generating will provide approximately 3 minutes of light.
    • 30 seconds of generating will provide approximately 15 minutes of light.
    • The torch may also be charged using the USB lead; connect the torch to a USB port on a PC (or USB charger) and charge for approximately 2 hours to fully charge the battery.


    • Do not shine the light directly into peoples’ eyes, as the bright light can cause eye injuries.
    • Keep the torch away from fire and other sources of heat.
    • The torch is not waterproof.
    • Clean the external surfaces of the torch with a dry cloth and avoid the use of any cleaning product.
    • Do not expose the torch to direct sunlight for long periods for time.
    • When using the USB charging point it is recommend that the charging time does not exceed 3 hours.