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West Midlands fire chief found dead amid investigation into qualifications

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Chief officer of West Midlands fire service found at home

Wayne Brown, the Chief Fire Officer of West Midlands Fire Service, was discovered deceased at his home.

Greg Brackenridge, the chairman of West Midlands Fire and Rescue Authority, confirmed the incident on January 24, 2024.

West Midlands Police reported that the death is not being treated as suspicious, and formal identification is forthcoming.

Investigation into qualifications

Before his death, Brown was subject to an investigation concerning allegations about his qualifications for his role.

These allegations, which surfaced on social media, questioned the authenticity of his qualifications, particularly a master’s degree from London South Bank University, which he had mentioned on his LinkedIn profile.

West Midlands Fire Service had initiated a formal inquiry into these claims.

Career and contributions

Brown’s career in fire services spanned over 27 years, beginning with the London Fire Brigade and later joining the West Midlands service in November 2019 as Deputy Chief Fire Officer.

He was appointed as Chief Fire Officer in January 2023.

Tributes and responses

Following the announcement of Brown’s death, tributes and condolences were expressed by various fire and rescue services across the UK.

London Fire Commissioner Andy Roe, Fiona Twycross, London’s deputy mayor for fire and resilience, South Yorkshire Fire Service, and Greater Manchester Fire & Rescue Service acknowledged his service and expressed condolences to his family, friends, and colleagues.

About Wayne Brown

Wayne Brown, having served in the fire and rescue sector for over 27 years, held significant positions within the UK’s fire services.

His career began with the London Fire Brigade, where he achieved the rank of Assistant Commissioner.

He joined the West Midlands Fire Service as Deputy Chief Fire Officer in 2019, before being promoted to Chief Fire Officer in 2023.

His service included involvement in major incidents such as the Grenfell Tower fire and the 2005 London terrorist attacks.

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