MORE than 30 firefighters from the North-East and North Yorkshire who died on active service have been included on a national memorial.

Members of the Firefighters Memorial Trust spent 16 years trying to find the details of every fireman who died on duty since the service was formed and the list of more than 2,000 servicemen stretches back to 1723.

The Queen Mother originally unveiled the memorial, near St Paul's Cathedral in London, in 1991, when it included a list of 997 firefighters killed during wartime.

And last week, a further 1,173 names added to the memorial were unveiled by the Princess Royal.

The trust said they included details of as many recorded firefighter deaths as possible.

Divisional Officer David Turnbull, of County Durham and Darlington Fire Service, said the memorial was a fitting tribute to those who made the ultimate sacrifice.

Among the names included are John Donley and Tony Hall, who died on September 5, 1982.

They were on their way to a fire when their engine left the road and overturned in South Hetton, County Durham.

Mr Turnbull said: "We are delighted that these names have been placed on the list, it's just the unfortunate circumstances as to how they arrived there.

"But in the true traditions of the fire service, they were doing a job they loved.

"We in the fire service who knew them still have very happy memories of the two lads, but obviously our hearts still go out to their nearest and dearest.

"It's fitting that they have been officially recognised for serving the community."

Firefighters' names added to the National Memorial include the following:

County Durham and Darlington - John Donley, John Dowd, Anthony John Hall, Robert Little, William Thomas Morris, Albert Thornton Reay;

North Yorkshire - Henry Burdett, William Henry Longster, James Wilson, Robert Wood;

Cleveland - Ronald Dixon, William Rowntree Pattison, Hugh Robb, Geoffrey Michael Stone, William Thygasen;

Tyne and Wear - Alexander Anderson, George Anderson, Robert Nixon Angus, George Batey, William Bowey, Norman Dodd, Jonathon William Dryden, Andrew Giblin, James Gray, Matthew George Green, John Staff Hasker, George Henry Haswell, Walter J Laidler, William McHarry, William Murphy, Thomas Scott, Arthur Spurrs, Ernest William Storey, John Taylor;

Northumberland - George Edward Gladstone.