Supporters dig deep for brigade

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High hopes: Red Hill CFA brigade members and supporters are Ernie Setter, Jeremy Cattell, Chris Coller, Barry Johns, Leah Costanzo, Darrel Setter, Martin Gallon and Peter White. Picture: Yanni

RED Hill Fire Brigade’s planned upgrades are a step closer thanks to a concerted fundraising effort by members of the brigade, residents, businesses and an online appeal which raised $45,500 in just a few weeks.

First Lieutenant Sam Norris said the station would soon need to replace its 27 and 25-year-old trucks with new trucks standing 3.3 metres high. The building height would have to be raised to four metres to fit them in.

“We’ll be doing most of the actual work ourselves on the renovations as we have a few builders, plumber and electrician in our ranks,” he said. “And we’ll rely on a few community contributions, such as concreting, from nearby tradies and residents.”

The station unsuccessfully applied for half a dozen government grants over the past 12 months to help pay for materials estimated to cost $125,000. Fundraising efforts have been spearheaded by Many Little Bar & Bistro, which has itself raised $50,000, alongside Red Hill residents’ contributions of $30,000, a $20,000 donation from the Bendigo Bank Dromana, and a $10,000 donation from Lindenderry Red Hill Hotel.

Many Little will be holding a fundraising night and charity auction, Friday 21 February, with all proceeds going the Red Hill CFA. It will start at 3pm with a presentation by CFA members. The auction at 3.30pm will be followed by live music by Aaron Speed.

Businesses to donate items include: Endota Red Hill, Port Phillip Estate, St Kilda Football Club, Channel 9, Ten Minutes by Tractor, Lindenderry, Red Hill Estate, Paringa Estate, Nordie, Tedesca Osteria, Red Gum BBQ, Red Hill CFA, VinsBins, Haven Red Hill, Paradou, The Red Hill Epicurean, Red Hill Garden Centre, Prossor Water, Tsar Carpets, Red Hill Wrought Iron and artists Mary Schepisi and Jenny Riddle.

Ocean Eight wines, Scicluna’s produce and other food-and-wine suppliers will provide lunch on the day. All welcome.

About $22,000 was raised from ticket sales.

First published in the Southern Peninsula News – 4 February 2020

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