Becky Hinchley

In 2013 Becky started serving as a Royal Military Policewoman and spent 6 years in the British Army before realising her dream of becoming a firefighter. She does so now with Derbyshire Fire and Rescue Service, and her passion to help others has allowed her to raise awareness in the community whilst delivering an emergency response.

Most recently she loves that she has been able to help throughout the pandemic; working on Covid wards, volunteering in vaccination centres and offering help to vulnerable people in her community.

Becky still serves in the British Army as a Reservist vehicle mechanic alongside not only her firefighting career, but also her position in the Antarctic Fire Angels team. She is excited to be part of the team and hopes to inspire a generation to realise their full potential and know that no matter the barriers, a goal can always be achieved by being brave and taking the first step.

me: Rebecca Hinchley

Job Role: Firefighter & Army Reservist

What advice would you give your younger self?
Though life is difficult and times are hard, be who you are and trust yourself. The hardships you face today will prepare you for your future. Continue to go against the flow.

Describe yourself in 3 words? Robust, Caring, Determined

Favourite PenguinChinstrap Penguin

Becky’s Story (in her own words)

After finishing school and having no idea where I wanted to take my life, I took time away and worked myself around the world in the hope of chasing a dream.  I’ve always been taught to never be afraid of challenges and have lived more out of my comfort zone than in it.

In 2013 after struggling to find a place in the world, I joined the British Army.  Initially, I wanted to work with tanks, but found that career unavailable to me, so became a Royal Military Policewoman.  The idea scared me and I questioned myself whether I had made the right decision. I didn’t have that role model around to look up to, my family weren’t in the military and I definitely didn’t have a degree in law.  But I worked hard and eventually passed out and gained my first posting to Germany.

During my career, I was exposed to a lot of suffering and hardships, I made it my mission to serve not only Queen and Country, but also others around me.  I found compassion in the darkest of times and learned how our British sense of humour both helped and hindered the wellbeing of the people around me.  Separation is difficult, around the world soldiers were serving and getting in to trouble, without the support of their family or friends, and it was very easy to see how mental health deteriorated.

It was during this career and drawing from my previous experiences as an ambassador for women in sport, that I found the importance of being in the outdoors.  I have always had a passion for the outdoors and so qualified as a Mountain Leader, which then gave me the opportunity to take serving personnel and civilians out on adventurous training.  Seeing the benefits of controlled exposure to risk gave me the privilege to watch people grow and fight their demons.

I knew I wanted to continue in a career where I could help others, so made the big decision to become a reservist in the British Army as a vehicle mechanic and applied to be a wholetime firefighter for Derbyshire Fire and Rescue Services in 2018.

When the opportunity came along to cross Antarctica, I applied straight away! But unfortunately, my application with the army was unsuccessful.  So now, years later, having the opportunity to fulfil the dream of a lifetime with the fire service, I hope to use this as a platform to demonstrate that no matter how many times you fail, how imperfect you are, how many changes you go through – anything you set your mind to is possible and opportunities are everywhere.

I hope to  demonstrate that no matter how many times you fail, anything you set your mind to is possible and opportunities are everywhere...

Georgina Gilbert

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