Nelson Fire Station. Nelson Provincial Museum, F N Jones Collection: 321362.

Throwback Thursday: Old Fire Station


In November 1858 Nelson got it’s first hand pumped fire engine, and two years later local Edward Everett became the fire captain.

Edward earned his boots when, after a ship’s lower hold caught fire and was threatened with sinking it to extinguish the blaze, Edward chose to put the fire engine on a barge and extinguish the fire from atop the barge.


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In August 1866, 18 buildings were razed after the Lord Nelson Hotel, on the corner of Collingwood and Bridge Street burst into flames.

Despite the city’s two fire engines being kept within 500 metres away, they didn’t arrive on scene until 30 minutes later because the bell tower rope was broken and someone had to climb the tower to ring the bell.

No one died but after what was referred to as the Great Fire, Nelsonians decided to form, fund and train a Volunteer Fire Brigade.

The old fire station that still stands on Halifax St today was official opened on 12 June 1935 and has since been occupied by Georgie Pie, an estate agent, an IT company, a copying company and will be home to Aon Insurance at the start of next year.

The photo depicts a group of 13 workmen standing in front of the building during it’s construction.