Bigger and better land set for new fire brigade’s headquarters
HIDDEN from the road and expanding to keep up with fire demands, a local rural brigade has made the big move of signing a new lease.
The Westowe Rural Fire Brigade will be better equipped to protect the Yarwun community thanks to the 25-year rent-free land lease that has been donated by Gladstone Ports Corporation (GPC).
The local rural brigade, established in 1953, will expand to a bigger station and will now be able to increase their vital services with the 1.4 hectares of land at Calliope River Road in Yarwun.
The existing brigade site, on the corner Boyles and Spring Valley Road, only has two vehicle bays inside the shed. This has left members no option but to park their third truck outside.
First officer Danny Devers said the new headquarters would future-proof the brigade for the next 2.5 decades.
“We’ve got a 30-year-old shed which is hidden from the road and impossible for some to find,” he said.
“Our current location has caused a few issues for us and recently we’ve had several break-ins.
“We’re all looking forward to more space and having a real meeting room, at the moment we have to take the trucks out to use the space and it can be very hot in summer.”
Mr Devers said the brigade began looking for a new location three years ago before it found the port land.
“GPC were more than happy to give us the land at Yarwun and we have been fundraising for a new shed over the last 12 months,” he said.
“All our members are over the moon to be able to expand, especially because the last few fire seasons we’ve had, we had to buy water but now with our own bore we can cut costs, there’s a lot of benefits.”
Acting CEO Craig Walker said he was proud to see an area held by GPC, help the community in such a big way.
“The block is non-strategic port land and giving the tenure to the Westowe Rural Fire Brigade to relocate and expand their facility will mean an increase in fire services for our region,” Mr Walker said.
“This donation reaffirms GPC’s commitment to our community.”
Regional Development and Manufacturing Minister and Gladstone MP, Glenn Butcher said the new space will give the Westowe Rural Fire Brigade greater capability this bushfire season.
“It has been great to work with the Gladstone Ports Corporation and the Westowe Rural Fire Brigade to see this collaboration come together,” Mr Butcher said.
“The Gladstone community can be confident we are ready for the upcoming bushfire season.”
As the gateway for trade, jobs and prosperity, GPC remains focused on creating success for the communities in which it operates.