Initial entry criteria

To apply for a wholetime firefighter post, you must meet the entry criteria set out below at the application stage of the process and initial checks (including qualification checks) will be made at application stage.


  • Live within 10 miles of the boundary of the county of Cambridgeshire (as determined by Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue Service's mapping system). A list of what we can accept as proof of address can be found here. You will be asked to supply evidence of this at the information event as part of the recruitment process.
  • Be able to prove your eligibility to work in the UK. You will be asked to supply evidence of this at the information event, as part of the recruitment process. A list of what we can accept can be found here.
  • Have five GCSEs grade A* - C / 4 - 9 including Maths and English Language or equivalent. Please note that if they are equivalent, the equivalent to Maths and English Language grade A* - C must be included. Please see below for useful information relating to qualifications. You will be required to provide your certificates and/or evidence of them at the written ability assessment stage of the recruitment process.
  • You must have a full and current driving licence that entitles you to drive in the UK without restrictions. You will be required to provide evidence of this at the information event as part of the recruitment process, please ensure your driving licence states your current address.
  • Not be subject to any criminal convictions, which are not yet spent under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974. Including any offences dealt with by a court of law, HM Services disciplinary procedures and any driving offences. A Disclosure and Barring Service check will be carried out prior to employment. A guidance document can be found here.
  • Be 18 years of age on or by 06 May 2018.
  • Be able to swim, including being able to:

        -    Jump / dive into deep water

        -    Swim 50 metres in less than 70 seconds

        -    Swim 100 metres continuously on front and/or back in deep water using a recognised stoke e.g. front crawl, back stroke, breast stroke or butterfly.

        -    Tread water for 30 seconds

        -    Surface dive to the floor of the pool

        -    Climb out unaided without ladder/steps and where the pool design permits.

If you are interested in becoming a wholetime firefighter at Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue Service, and you meet the essential criteria above, please read the How to Apply section next.

Please note that applicants who have been unsuccessful in completing a new recruits course within the last 2 year period are not eligible to apply for the role of wholetime firefighter.

Qualification Information:

If you are unsure if your qualifications are equivalent to having five GSCE's A* - C including Maths and English Language, please contact an education provider or careers advisory service for clarification. Education providers are able to make broad comparisons. Each regulated qualification has a level. If a qualification shares the same level this means that they are broadly comparable in terms of the difficulty they place on the learner. However, qualifications at the same level can still be very different in terms of content and duration.

A regulated level 2 qualification is considered broadly comparable to GCSE standard at grades A* to C.

A regulated level 3 qualification is considered broadly comparable to A level standard at grades A* to C.

Some qualifications have transferable skills in Maths and English Language. However, a regulated level 3 qualification does not necessarily mean they are graded to A level standard, but will suffice at GCSE level.

For further information it may be beneficial to contact the awarding organisation for the qualification directly. A guide to understanding qualification comparability/equivalence can be found on the Ofqual website at the following address: