Skipton Captain Ian Nash says the brigade is part of the Westmere Group and has about 75 members of which 30 are active firefighters.
“We’re a typical rural fire brigade. The members are always there when you need them, and we’ve seen that in recent years with their attendance at the 2009 fire and the devastating floods that happened in 2010 and 2011,” Ian says.
The town of Skipton was one of the worst affected by the floods.
Ian says the community is very proud of the fact that Skipton brigade was deployed for almost a month in the Yea, Murrundindi, Taggerty and Marysville area in 2009. “It was a big commitment for a rural brigade of this size” he adds. “The brigade can normally cope with one rotation at a big bushfire, so the efforts of our members in 2009 were quite outstanding.”
The brigade received special recognition for its service to the community during this period.
Several awards were presented by Deputy Chief Officer John Haynes at the recent 75th anniversary dinner,
Awards included Honorary Life Membership (HLM) to Ex-Captain Alan Pitcher, firefighter Bill Shady, President John Kavanagh, and Captain Ian Nash.
President John Kavanagh received his 40-year clasp and Honorary Life Membership (HLM), Captain Ian Nash was awarded the 50-year clasp and HLM and ex Captain and former Westmere Deputy Group Officer Alan Pitcher the 50-year clasp and HLM and the Outstanding Service Award - the first to be awarded to a member of the Skipton Brigade.
Brigade Member Bill Shady received the 50-year clasp and HLM and the prestigious National Medal. The National Medal was instituted by letters patent granted by Queen Elizabeth the second on 14 February 1975 and is awarded to fire service members for diligent service for a period of 15 years.
DCO John Haynes wished everyone well and thanked Skipton CFA members for their great service and efforts to the community and the Skipton golf club ladies for the wonderful catering.