SA Volunteer Fire Fighters Museum Inc. > What's Happening


What's Happening

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SA Fire Museum Community Appeal

Thursday 19th June 2014

The development of a new museum in the South East dedicated to South Australia’s fire fighting history progressed to its next stage with an appeal for donations to help accelerate the project.

A committee of CFS volunteers who came up with the proposal eight years ago have been the driving force behind SA Volunteer Fire Fighters Museum which has secured a site in Smith Street at Naracoorte.

SAVFFM chairman Rex Hall said the building plans have been completed and with planning approvals pending was hoping for South Australians and private businesses to help kick-start its construction.

“This is a private project driven by a small group of CFS volunteers for the benefit of South Australians to preserve the state’s fire fighting history for future generations,” Mr Hall said.

“We’re relying on support from private donations and the private business sector which will be greatly appreciated for this museum to be the first of its kind in South Australia.”

The first stage of the project will involve the construction of a 25 x 25 metre shed on a concrete slab.
“Stage one of construction for the steel-framed shed, cement floor and fittings will cost around $150,000,” Mr Hall said.

The SAVFFM has acquired 20 decommissioned fire appliances with some of them restored by volunteers, in addition to a substantial collection of miscellaneous fire fighting items which will be stored at the museum in Naracoorte.

“These items which are being temporarily housed in sheds and shipping containers at the Naracoorte showground, include uniforms, protective equipment, training aids, maps, photos, and general memorabilia, some dating back almost a century,” Mr Hall said.

“The new museum will not only present South Australia’s volunteer fire fighting history but will also be somewhere to commemorate the contributions of past and present CFS volunteer firefighters towards their communities.”

Tax deductable donations or sponsorship for the SAVFFM project can be forwarded to PO Box 1222, Naracoorte, SA. 5271.

Further information on the museum is available from the SAVFFM website at 

For further enquiries contact Rex Hall on (08) 8762 1424 or 0417 081 560

SA to get firefighting museum

Wednesday, 26th March 2014

A dedicated team of CFS volunteers have finally secured leasing arrangements with the State Government after almost a decade of negotiations, to establish a fire-fighting museum in the South East.
Volunteer Fire Fighters Museum Chairman Rex Hall AFSM said an agreement was reached recently to lease a parcel of government land in Naracoorte for a nominal fee.
“The agreement with the State Government was reached last month paving the way for the museum to be built on land in Smith Street at Naracoorte, which is subject to the creation of the allotment,” Mr Hall said.
“This essentially ends almost a decade-long bid by volunteers to acquire a suitable site to house and display a constantly growing range of heritage items”.
The Volunteer Fire Fighters Museum has accrued various items of memorabilia, fire fighting equipment and several historic fire trucks with some restored by volunteers, which are being temporarily housed in sheds and shipping containers at the Naracoorte showgrounds.
“The museum has in its collection 20 former fire trucks, uniforms, protective equipment, training aids, maps, photos, and general memorabilia, some dating back almost a century,” Mr Hall said.
“CFS has a long and proud history and it is therefore appropriate that we present items that reflect this history as a dedication to our volunteers and in a way that shares it with the people of South Australia and the museum will do that,” he said.
Mr Hall said that he is now hoping that the first stage of the museum will be completed within the next 18 months.
 “This museum will collect, conserve and display CFS heritage,” he said.
“It will also be educational for school children, nostalgic for country people and informative for everybody with an interest in our State and the history of the CFS.”
Mr Hall said that the Museum Committee was grateful of the State Government’s support in addition to its corporate sponsors, CFS management, and CFS volunteers whose efforts have led to an exciting milestone to establish a new museum.

Rex Hall foreground, with Committee Members David Ghezzi, Alan Hall and Roger Bennett
with 1943 Ford Blitz fire appliance. Photo by Peter Grieve.

For media enquiries contact SA Volunteer Fire Fighters Museum chairman Rex Hall on (08) 8762 1424

Ash Wednesday commemoration, Furner

AROUND 150 people gathered at Furner on Saturday to reflect on the 30th anniversary of the devastating Ash Wednesday bushfires that swept across the region on February 16, 1983.

The SAFFM provided Memorabilia, such as recovered items, as well as photographs, press cuttings and television news footage from the 1983 events at the Furner Hall throughout the afternoon.

SAVFF Museum Blitz on Float

Museum display at Furner

SAVFFM Members at Furner

John Probert and Rex Hall

Smokey at  Museum display

SAFFM Caps for Sale

The SAFFM has produced a run of caps featuring the SAFFM emblem on the front or sale now. Please contact Rex for details on how to purchase these items.

Museum on Show

TATIARA community health men’s business group visited the SA Volunteer Fire Fighters Museum in Naracoorte last week.
Nearly 40 older men from Bordertown and Keith saw the vintage fire equipment stored at Naracoorte Showgrounds.  Many were former members of the CFS and enjoyed seeing the types of equipment which they’d used many years ago.  After visiting the museum, the group had lunch at the Kincraig Hotel.
Museum chairman Rex Hall said the men “were fascinated. I think they could really relate to the memorabilia.”
He spoke to the group about the museum’s aims and aspirations.

Andrew Reed and Basil Thiele of Bordertown with SA volunteer fire fighters museum chairman Rex Hall.

“I gave a brief outline of what we are hoping to achieve - research, record, conserve and promote the history and equipment.”
The museum’s local working party committee members will submit a plan to the National Trust soon. The committee wish to build a permanent home for the museum in the trust’s grounds in MacDonnell St.
Mr Hall said if the plan was accepted, the committee would submit another plan to Naracoorte Lucindale Council for approval.
The historic equipment has been housed at the showgrounds for eight years and Mr Hall would like to see a permanent home in MacDonnell St in the next 18 months.  The committee is applying for government grants and raising money by raffles and donations.  “We are so appreciative of the show society for leasing the premises to us,” Mr Hall said.

Article sourced from the Naracoorte Herald -

$250k CFS museum for Naracoorte

Significant steps are being taken for Naracoorte to house a permanent and public display of historic fire-fighting vehicles, CFS uniforms, photographs and other memorabilia from all parts of SA. If all goes to plan, a purpose-built pavilion for the State museum costing about $250,000 will be erected in the grounds of the Sheep’s Back Museum in MacDonnell St.

Derek Blackwell (left) and Rex Hall in the foreground with working party members Alan Hall, Barry Clark, Roger Bennett and Graeme McPhee standing on the rear deck of the former Coonalpyn CFS water tanker.

In-principle agreement for such a development has recently been struck between the Naracoorte National Trust branch (owners of the Sheep’s Back Museum), and the SA Volunteer Fire Fighters Museum Incorporated. The next stage of the proposal is to develop a business plan and detailed drawings which are agreeable to the two organisations.The drawings must also comply with the regulatory requirements of Naracoorte Lucindale Council.

Article sourced from the Naracoorte Herald -

Old tanker heads to heritage museum
Tuesday, 7 September 2010 

The CFS Heritage Committee has announced the acquisition of a decommissioned CFS tanker to be added to its fleet of historic vehicles. 
The former Coonalpyn tanker had been in service since the early 1980s and later became the property of the Coorong District Council.
The former Coonalpyn CFS Tanker kindly donated by the Coorong District Council to the Heritage Committee

CFS Heritage Committee chairman Rex Hall AFSM said he was grateful for the council’s decision to donate this old tanker for future generations to appreciate its significance.   “This appliance made a significant contribution to the region during its period of service,” Mr Hall said.   “The Coorong District Council’s generous donation of the Coonalpyn tanker to the Heritage Committee was a culmination of six months of negotiations and discussions between the two groups.   “Coorong District Council recognised the heritage value of this vehicle,”” Mr Hall said.   “The Coonalpyn tanker will be housed in the CFS Heritage Museum at Naracoorte, adding to its existing fleet of 18 historic CFS appliances.”
Coorong District Council Chief Executive Michael Boyd (left) receives a certificate of appreciation from Heritage Committee chairman Rex Hall AFSM

An arrangement to transport the old tanker to its new home is still being negotiated.   “It’s also hoped that in future with further support and funding that the old Coonalpyn tanker will be restored to its original condition,” Mr Hall said.   “This is our ultimate goal in helping to preserve our historic vehicles.”



The SACFS HERITAGE COMMITTEE Cordially invites past & current EFS / CFS Volunteers, Staff and families to join them at the  2010 CFS REUNION on SATURDAY 31ST JULY 2010 at the ALLAN SCOTT MORPHETTVILLE PARK COMPLEX
7.00 PM for Registration followed by a light buffet dinner. $30.00 per head, Drinks available

At the ALLAN SCOTT MORPHETTVILLE PARK COMPLEX from 10.00 AM with buffet BBQ lunch

Please RSVP early but prior to July 15th to:
Rex Hall
Phone:        (08) 8762 1424
Mobile:        0417 081 560
Postal address:       26 FOSTER ST NARACOORTE SA 5271

Download a copy of the invitation here

Arno Bay 34 Restoration

The Arno Bay 34 appliance is receiving attention with assistance from participants of the Work for the Dole scheme in Adelaide.

Progress pictures are from the work carried out to date.

Fire Expo

The CFS Heritage Committee will he holding a Fire Expo at the Naracoorte Show Grounds on the 25th of October, between 9.30am and 3.30pm.

The show will include the following.
  • Display of Heritage Fire Appliances
  • Smokey the Koala
  • Community Education
  • Farm Fire Units
  • Forestry Hose LayDEH laws and legislation
  • Display by CFS Cadets
  • Fire Safety Trade display
Catering will also be available throughout the day.

Yorke Peninsula Field Day display

The CFS Heritage Committee set up a display in the CFS tent at the Yorke Peninsula Field Days site at Paskeville featuring a collection of appliance pictures, equipment and recently released history books.

The display won Best Outdoor Exhibit for the show, which is a credit to the work put in by all concerned.

New Website launched

Saturday, 13th June 2009

The CFS Heritage Committee have launched a new website to showcase the collection of appliances, equipment and documents.

This online display will be continuously updated as new items arrive.  

Work initiative restores fire truck

Thursday, 23 April 2009

Ian Jamieson from XMRC receiving a certificate of appreciation from Rex Hall of the CFS Volunteer Association

The CFS Heritage Committee will today take possession of an old fire truck that was restored through the efforts of a dedicated group of unemployed workers as part of a job creation initiative.

CFS Heritage Committee chairman Rex Hall AFSM said the project began six months ago with the help of the CFS Volunteers Association to restore a Dodge fire truck.

“This truck required a lot of work to restore it to showroom condition,” he said.

The Ex Military Rehabilitation Centre (XMRC) at Edinburgh and community employment agency Jobs Statewide Inc combined their resources to tackle the project.

“A total of eight unemployed people were tasked to restore the fire truck and its ancillary equipment which involved metal work, spray painting and panel beating,” Mr Hall said.

“Seven of those who worked on this project have since gained full and part time employment with one person still in full time training.”

A presentation to mark the completion of the project and acknowledge the work of its participants, will take place at 12 noon today at XMRC at Building 186, Contractors Road in Edinburgh.

The restored vehicle will be placed in the CFS Heritage Committee Museum at Naracoorte.

For more information contact Rex Hall on 8762 1424.


SA Volunteer Fire Fighters Museum Inc