Much conjecture surrounds the history of many brigades and Putaruru is no different. Confusion is usually born out of the lack of recording events etc in days gone by or they have been lost over time. These Pages will eventually contain the history of the Putaruru Fire Brigade as best we know it. It is a work in progress and will evolve over a period of time so if you have an interest in the brigade, town or members, return to this website on a regular basis.
The Putaruru Volunteer Fire Brigade originated from the Emergency Precautions Services. The EPS was a forerunner to our emergency services in that Fire Squads and Civil Defence Squads were organised and managed by local councils.
Putaruru was no exception and in 1942 the first meeting of the EPS – fire fighting section was held in the office of Mr A Fountain. Nine members were present at that meeting and it was decided to manufacture a pump to replace the buckets and the sand boxes that had been placed strategically throughout the town. The squad was located on Overdale road at the WDFF rooms in a building just big enough to house the pump and to have enough room in which members could meet and discuss their plans. The new pump was to be towed to fires either by a members’ car or by the vehicle pictured below which was on loan to the unit by one members’ employer.
1942 was also the year of the draft for Home Guard and members of our EPS squad appealed against the draft on the grounds that they were already serving their communities and contributing to the war effort through being members of the EPS fire squad. Their appeal was successful and Mr Fountain was appointed to two important positions 1: the Unit Superintendant and 2: the Town District Fire Officer. In the years to come Mr Fountain was to become the driving force behind the progress of the Putaruru Brigade and in 1943 he tabled plans for the building of a new Fire Station at the cost of £92/0/0