Anzac Day in Portobello

 Raising of the flagDespite the rain the Anzac Day service at Portobello Museum was well attended by young an old on Friday 25th April. The service was a fitting tribute for all of those who served throughout the last 100 years, but 2014 is particularly poignant being the 100th anniversary of the beginning of World War One.

Anzac Day is a unique part of New Zealand life. We commemorate and we mourn together in every city and every small town across the country. As a nation and in our communities we reach out spiritually and physically to those who served but were lost to us forever. We stand beside or remember those who served and were returned to us.

Anzac day is the time when we gather together and remember those men and women who as ordinary people did extraordinary things in extraordinary times, in events and places that shaped the world’s history. Anzac Day is a time when we reflect on the peace that we have enjoyed created by the sacrifice and service of those willing to serve their communities, their country and their comrades. Perhaps, in this time of peace on Anzac Day we should reflect and show stronger resolve on how we can best serve our families, our community and our country today. In 100 years New Zealand and all of its servicemen and women have shown the world that the real and lasting victories are those of peace and not of war.

At the conclusion of the service a commemorative tree was planted with a plaque to honour the 100th anniversary of the beginning of World War One. There was also a welcome cup of tea at the end of the service and a chance to reminisce with friends and loved ones. Many thanks to the Portobello Museum volunteers and Portobello Community incorporated for your work in organising the event.

Lest we forget.

The Fire Brigade’s Golden Jubilee

The Hereweka Street Fire Station in PortobelloThe Portobello Volunteer Fire Brigade is celebrating its Golden Jubilee this year. It’s an enviable record of 50 years of service to the Peninsula region and its community. The Brigade held an open day on Saturday 12th of April at the Hereweka Street Station to give the public an opportunity to see what they do and learn more about the organisation. With a range of displays on the history of the Fire Service, fire safety and the historic vehicles the open day was a popular event in Portobello. One of the most popular for the many children who were there was a ride in the vintage fire truck which was kept busy making a rowdy circuit around Portobello.

SONY DSCThe Portobello Brigade have also produced a great Golden Jubilee book detailing the beginnings of the Brigade, its membership and the many events it has undertaken during its 50 years of service. Open day visitors were also able to see some of the  newspaper articles and photographs taken over the years, which sparked many memories for visitors.

With a demonstration of car cutting equipment and techniques for putting out a fat fire the open day had something of interest for the many visitors who attended. The Otago Peninsula is very fortunate to have the men and women of the Volunteer Fire Brigade provide such invaluable service to our community. With responses to medical emergencies, fire, road crashes and search and rescue our community can be heartened to know that help and reassurance is close at hand in often difficult circumstances. So congratulations to the Portobello Volunteer Fire Brigade and all of its volunteers on 5o years of service to our community, well done. (Click on the photographs to see in a full size viewer.)