Story by Cass Alexander
Rushworth Fire Brigade (RFB) Captain Graeme Wall tells visitors to the station that, “Brigade membership comprises ninety-five per cent enjoyment, four per cent hard work, and one per cent heartbreak.”
It is a sentiment that most brigade members would endorse, and the reason that most of them stay involved with the brigade and remain active year after year. It is also the message that the brigade is keen to promote as it opens its fire station doors to prospective new members on Tuesday 13 March, starting at 7pm.
RFB membership currently hovers around twenty, and the brigade is keen to add several more people to that number prior to the 2012-13 fire season.
Visitors to the new members can find out about the brigade and the superb training that underpins its many activities. They will be able to explore the brigade’s fleet of firefighting vehicles, try out some fire suppression equipment and gain a sense of the camaraderie that is such a vital element in the brigade’s continuing success.
Visitors will also be able to examine preliminary plans for the new Rushworth Fire Station which will be built on the old grain silo site adjacent to Murchison Road.
Working away from Rushworth is no barrier to brigade membership. Several of the team’s most experienced personnel work out of town but are happy to be on-call at other times. “It’s better to be available fifty per cent of the time than not at all,” one observes.
The brigade also welcomes multiple family members. It already has several father/son combinations and values their commitment very highly. Alistair and Deb Thompson are an active husband and wife team that benefits from shared skills and operational experiences.
When issuing the invitation for locals to come along to the new member night, Graeme Wall stresses that “everyone is welcome ... even if they would just like to have a look around. There’s no pressure to join the brigade but we’d be delighted if they felt they’d like to.
“Visitors can be assured of a warm welcome - it’s the least you could expect from a fire brigade,” Captain Wall quips mischievously.
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