10 May 2023

On Saturday 15 April I was delighted to attend the Woodford Rural Fire Brigade's celebration of 100 years. The brigade is proud to be one of the oldest in New South Wales. On Friday 12 January 1923 a group of dedicated volunteers met under the chairmanship of Gustavus Waterhouse, a successful businessman and philanthropist, to establish a bush fire brigade in the village. At the time, the Great Western Highway was just a track through the bush. It was founded mainly to protect the community from bushfires, but its activities now include attending motor vehicle incidents and assisting with storms and floods. One of the brigade's biggest and proudest traditions is its ongoing dialogue with the local community to assist residents with bushfire preparedness. Brigade president Mark Ashmore said:

The people of Woodford banded together 100 years ago to create something for their common good. We do the same now, and I'm sure we still will in another 100 years.

On behalf of the local mid‑mountains community, I extend my heartfelt thanks to Captain Keven Wright and his wonderful band of volunteers.