Sharing Memories of the Fire Hall

01.25.2021 01:38 PM By service

Platoon Chief recalls training, wildlife invasions and fine people

MEMORY No. 1

Platoon Chief recalls training, wildlife invasions and fine people

I worked as a professional firefighter out of Central Fire Hall from 1996 to when it closed in 2006. As for memories, I have many.  From the first time I slid down a brass pole from the 2nd floor, to waking up in the middle of the night with mice crawling over me in the upper bedrooms.  From climbing the hose tower to check on the clock, to practicing bailouts from the 2nd floor windows. 

I worked, trained, ate and slept there for 10 years and it was like a second home to me.  The creaky floors, the clanking hot water pipes, and dusty basement are all etched in my mind.  That hall would often be invaded by wildlife like bats, skunks, squirrels, bees and neighbourhood cats which we would have to catch and remove. 

Every night we would have our break sitting on the front bumper of the Aerial watching the local populace at the corner of Hellems and Division.  Backing trucks into that hall were always a challenge due to the traffic light planted in the middle of the front pad.  Mostly I remember the men and women I served with in that hall who are some of the finest people I have ever met.


Tim King, Platoon Chief, Welland Fire and Emergency Services.

 

MEMORY No. 2

Pole slides with grandfather the fire captain
My grandfather, Roy Tufts and his brother Fred were both firemen at the Central Firehall. My grandfather was a Captain and I remember my mother taking me and my brother to visit him at the Firehall.

This would have been in around 1950 and the highlight of the visit would be that Grampa would take us upstairs, pick us up and we would slide down the pole.

We also got to sit in the fire trucks 🚒. Back then it was a big deal. I’m sure many of my cousins had similar experiences.


Richard Dekker 

MEMORY No. 3

I would pedal my fire engine to Central Station

I have fond memories of growing up in Welland and the Central Fire Station. My dad owned Ernie's Shoes on Main Street in Welland (1964-1976).

We lived at 22 Grove Street, just a block away from the fire station.  Looking out my bedroom window, I could clearly see the clock tower.

I would pedal my little fire engine over to visit the firemen. If they were out washing the engines, they would wash mine also.

I still have my pedal engine. I have attached pictures of the fire truck, me with it and our Grove Street home.


Michael Csele

Please share your memories of the fire hall

Do you have a fond memory of Welland’s Central Fire Station? Perhaps you’re a firefighter who recalls the excitement of answering a particular call or the friendships fostered over the years. You may be a family member who recalls “at home” receptions.  Maybe as a student your class visited the hall and you still remember the magic of seeing the trucks, fire poles, hoses, dispatch centre and plastic fire helmets as well as fire safety lessons learned. As a neighbour, did you jump when the alarms sounded and sirens wailed? As a Welland resident passing by, did you regularly check the time by looking at the clock tower? Do you recall red alarm boxes on your street? As a visitor, did you admire the impressive classic style building and its unusual decorations

Please share those memories with us in 150 words or less.

Send them by email to Wayne Campbell, secretary of the Central Station Education Initiative, at waynedcamp@gmail.com.

We will organize and edit them for posting on our website and Facebook page.