FIREFIGHTERS served up a festive fire safety message with turkey and Christmas pudding yesterday.

About 40 elderly residents from Consett and Leadgate were waited on by officers at Consett fire station as they enjoyed a Christmas dinner with a difference.

After the pudding was washed down with a sherry or two, fire officers delivered a lecture on safety around the home over Christmas.

Sub officer Ritchie McArdle said there was a serious message behind the festive fun.

He said: "It was an unusual way for us to get the safety message across to old people in the area.

"We thought we'd give them a nice Christmas meal then give them a couple of presentations.

"It was mainly common sense, but we told them to avoid letting wrapping paper pile up and things like that."

Christmas decorations and the food for the event were donated by local businesses