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Local firefighters honoured for service to region

Hatton Vale Summerholm Fire Warden Colin Harch received his second, third and fourth National Medal Clips at the Rural Fire Service service awards.
Hatton Vale Summerholm Fire Warden Colin Harch received his second, third and fourth National Medal Clips at the Rural Fire Service service awards. Ali Kuchel

HE'S held almost every position available in the rural fire brigade, and now cattle farmer Colin Harch has been honoured for more 30 years of service.

But Mr Harch has volunteered his time for more than 30 years, in fact, he's been at the forefront of firefighting for 57 years.

Mr Harch received his second, third and fourth clasps at the Rural Fire Service awards ceremony in Gatton at the weekend, along with a number of local volunteer firefighters.

He was also awarded A Diligent and Ethical Service clasp for 10 years service - his fourth clasp.

"If it was left to me I would have any medals or any clasps," Mr Harch said.

"I'm not in the brigade to get medals and clasps, I'm in the brigade because my duty was to fight fires."

Mr Harch first started in the auxiliary service in 1959 at Laidley. He spent nine years there before moving across to the Summerholm Bush Fire Brigade.

 

A number of volunteer firefighters from the region recieved recognition of their services at a ceremony in Gatton on October 29, 2016.
A number of volunteer firefighters from the region recieved recognition of their services at a ceremony in Gatton on October 29, 2016. Geoff Purton RFS

He's held every position imaginable, and now is the fire warden, issuing burning permits to the community.

"At the moment, because of my age, I'm not a real active fire fighter, but I'm still a full time fire warden and I really enjoy being a fire warden," Mr Harch said.

Mr Harch said firefighting has changed during his time with the service.

"When I joined Summerholm, we never even had a fire truck," he said.

"When we got one, we were the only brigade that had a truck... but now if there's a fire there could be more than 20 trucks turning up, that's the difference."

Still managing his cattle farm, Mr Harch is a proud volunteer.

"When I started off I was a farmer, and firefighting was more common sense than anything else," he said.

"Today, the firefighters are well trained and they can do their job very well."

Award Winners

National Medal 15 years' service

* Victor Bawden

* Ivan Dallinger

* Robyn Outen-Scott

* Pauline Prince

* Robert Scott

* Ian Weatherhead

National Medal Clasps

* Colin Harch

* Ivan Dallinger

* Malcolm Thompson

* Victor Bawden

Dilligent and Ethical Service Medal 10 years' service

* Christina Bawden

* Victor Bawden

* Zane Bradshaw

* Stanley Cassells

* Gay Dallinger

* Stuart Damrow

* John Elton

* Matthew Gooch

* Donna Hanlon

* Stephen Hanrahan

* Tracey Hanrahan

* Amy Hartness

* Colin Jackson

* Caroline Lindenberg

* Thomas Lindenberg

* Ian Lindenmayer

* Peter Lyons

* Andrew Percy

* Pauline Prince

* Les Prince

* Jamie Reside

* Jenni Viles

* Ian Weatherhead

* Paul Zimmer

Dilligent and Ethical Service Clasps

* Colin Harch (4th)

* Victor Bawden (1st and 2nd)

* Gary Chapman (2nd)

* John Bowles (1st)

Topics:  fire fighters volunteers


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