Fireman Sam is an animated comedy children's television series about a fireman called Sam, his fellow firefighters, and other townspeople in the fictional Welsh rural town of Pontypandy (a portmanteau of two real towns, Pontypridd and Tonypandy, which are situated approximately 5 miles (8.0 km) apart in the South Wales valleys). The original idea for the show came from two ex-firemen from Kent, who took their idea to artist and writer Rob Lee who developed the concept, and the show was later commissioned by S4C.
Fireman Sam first appeared in Welsh on S4C as Sam Tân in 1987, and later that year in English on BBC1. The original series finished in 1994, and a new series that expanded the character cast commenced in 2005. The series was also shown in Gaelic in Scotland, where it was known as Sam Smalaidh. The series was sold to over 40 countries and has been used across the United Kingdom to promote fire safety.