Black leather fire bucket, probably 18th century.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
Fire bucket with painted floral design and appliqued leather ornament. Fire buckets like this were used to pas water from hand to hand when fighting fires. Fire fighting was then financed by the fire insurance companies who used their distinctive company logos to advertise their presence. Firefighting teams also wore very distinctive uniforms and vied with each other to be first at a fire.