The fire service has pledged to employ more people from ethnic minorities to make it more diverse.

The London Assembly’s fire, resilience and emergency planning committee and Dany Cotton, the London Fire Commissioner yesterday heard concerns about the what the London Fire Brigade is doing to recruit from Black Asian Minority Ethnic (BAME) communities.

In 2016, 21 per cent of people recruited into the fire service were from BAME communities, but in 2017 this dropped to 16.3 per cent.

Ms Cotton said: “When I look at my groups of recruits I think they are fantastically diverse but if we are not recruiting from the biggest pool of talent then we can’t possibly be picking the best firefighters.

“We are doing more research into BAME people becoming firefighters but we also have to do more outreach work and make sure we are going to speak to people in lots of different communities.”

MS Cotton told the assembly she was doing lots of local initiatives, like going into communities to ensure the fire brigade recruits people from varied backgrounds.

Ms Cotton also said the brigade would be recruiting more women, highlighting that after the last assessment day 45 per cent of women who attended were accepted onto the application process.

In 2017, 11.6 per cent of women who applied to join the fire brigade were accepted compared to 10.5 per cent in 2016.

Ms Cotton said: “For people that didn’t get in we are giving them some positive and helpful support.

“We want to have better levels of women coming in.”

Although Ms Cotton said she didn’t have the reasons why women didn’t get in to hand but said she would look into it.