CFA is pleased to announce its new memorial site will be part of a newly established Victorian Emergency Services Memorial.
Memorial concept. Image: rush/wright associates
The memorial, which will be located at the Treasury Gardens in Melbourne’s CBD, will include CFA, MFB, VICSES, Forest Fire Management Victoria (FFMV), Ambulance Victoria and Life Saving Victoria.
CFA has been working closely with Emergency Management Victoria to identify a suitable site which was made possible thanks to support from the City of Melbourne.
The Future Melbourne Committee of the City of Melbourne recently signed off on the location and design so we have now submitted the proposal to Heritage Victoria for approval.
CFA Acting Chief Officer Gavin Freeman said CFA worked with the families and brigades of those on the memorial to get their views on what the new memorial should look like and where it should be placed.
“We want to continue to honour, respect and remember those who lost their lives in the line of duty so it was important for us to connect with those families and brigades to help us find the best possible location,” Mr Freeman said.
“The feedback we received pointed to a central location, accessible by public transport in a quiet and peaceful setting. We feel Treasury Gardens is the perfect place and it reflects the wishes from those involved.
“The location provides the necessary solemnity required for a memorial and is easily accessible where the community can also pay their respects.”
Valerie Clarke lost her father Norman Robinson in the 1943 Tarrawingee fire. Norman was one of ten men who died in what remains one of the greatest loss of firefighters in the line of duty in Victoria’s history.
“Treasury Gardens is not only a beautiful location, it also allows easy access for country people like myself and my extended family to pay tribute to my father and all the other brave people who gave their lives protecting others,” Mrs Clarke said.
Once completed, the new memorial site will host some of CFA’s annual memorial services on St Florian’s Day - the Patron Saint of Firefighters.
“This service is dedicated to remembering the 78 firefighters who gave their lives through service to the community,” Mr Freeman said.
“It’s an important time to honour these personal sacrifices and I know the new memorial site at Treasury Gardens will be an appropriate setting for us to pay our respects.”
The original plaques from the CFA Firefighter Memorial at Fiskville, built after the 1983 Ash Wednesday fires, will be included in the new memorial site in a crypt. The fallen firefighters’ names will be listed on the new memorial.
CFA hopes the memorial will be complete by mid 2019. The memorial committee is currently considering the possibility of building smaller, complementary memorials in central regional locations.