New, modern fire station for Cabramatta’s firefighters something to be proud of
Station officer John Moore is flanked by retired firefighters (at left) Maj Gen Warren Glenny and Stan Grunsell; and at right, Peter Boughton and Laurie Nelson. CHRIS McKEEN
Cabramatta fire station as it appeared some time in the late 1930s in Railway Parade, Cabramatta. It was located next to the Cabramatta and Canley Vale Town Hall, which is now the site of the current PCYC.
FORMER Cabramatta fire volunteer Arch Cooper recalls having to crank up a vintage fire engine by hand at Cabramatta’s old fire headquarters on Railway Pde in the late 1950s.
It’s a far cry from the experience of Cabramatta’s current firefighters, who last week celebrated the opening of their new, state-of-the-art fire station on the Cumberland Highway.
Fitted out with the latest fire-fighting equipment, a new gym and the capacity to house two modern fire engines, the new station updates the previous headquarters on Cabramatta Rd.
It also signals a huge change from the humble beginnings of Cabramatta’s fire service, Mr Cooper said.
“Considering what we started off with, which was a little wooden station on Railway Parade, it is very impressive,” the Canley Vale resident said.
“I remember having to crank-start the engine.
“We just had a couple of rooms; a lunch room, a watch room, and so on. Now they have quite good facilities and a state-of-the-art station.”
Mr Cooper began volunteering with the Cabramatta fire brigade in 1957 and, during his 14 years with the service, assisted with a number of high-profile emergencies, including fires at Liverpool Hospital, Fairfield’s bowling alley, the Engadine bushfires and Holsworthy army barracks.
Last week he joined former volunteers, serving fire fighters, police and emergency services minister Michael Gallacher and Fire and Rescue NSW Deputy Commissioner Jim Smith for the new stations grand unveiling.
“The new station is three times the size of the old station and the new location provides easy access to major roads, which will mean better response times across the area,” Mr Gallacher said.
Cabramatta’s new $.35 million fire station was opened by police and emergency services minister Michael Gallacher and Fire and Rescue NSW Deputy Commissioner Jim Smith last week
The new station, on the Cumberland Hwy, can store two fire trucks, has better access to major roads and features modern facilities, updated equipment and a fitness room
The Cabramatta Fire Brigade was established in 1928
Cabramatta’s firies responded to more than 1400 fires and emergencies, and took part in about 280 community engagement activities, in 2011/12