Restored over 5 months in 2020, the Blue Light Bar is a 1981 Dennis RS fire engine formally of Kent Fire & Rescue Service. Based first at Teynham and later at Wingham, she spent over 15 years as an active appliance before being sold on to a private airfield in East Sussex.
After an extensive restoration, she was converted into a mobile bar in 2020.
The restoration and conversion was featured on Channel 4 'George Clark's Amazing Spaces' which aired in January 2021 and is available to watch on 4OD.
It came as no surprise that George would be interested in the conversion of an old fire engine after his efforts and support of fire fighters responding to Grenfell in 2017. Greeting us with his wide grin and geordie charm he soon put us at ease and was a pleasure to meet and film with.
STRIPPING IT BACK
The day we took delivery of 'Denise', as she is affectionately known, I think it hit us how much work there was to do. We started stripping back and it revealed 39 years of wear and tear as well as copious amounts of rust and damp. Undeterred, and probably slightly naïve, we began work every spare chance we had through frost, rain and wind. It wasn't all smiles and at times it was hard to see where all the work was going but determination and lots of cups of tea saw us through
BUILDING THE BAR
The day we started building the bar was a symbolic moment as we went from stripping her back to putting her back together. Also, the weather had finally got better, Hooray! The final product you will see was about version five as we developed our woodwork skills - self taught and novices when we started, youtube was a constant point of reference.
REMOVING THE TANK
The tank coming out felt like the biggest relief. We finally had a chance to see what space we had to play with
OUR AMAZING SPACE
The final day of filming is when the whole bar came together. It was the first time we had her 'dressed' in all her splendour with drinks a plenty and looking bright and beautiful in the sunshine. Pouring our first draft pint and proudly serving it to George marked the end of this amazing journey to make our amazing space.