Ballina fireys to keep an Anzac Day tradition alive
WHILE Anzac Day commemoration services for this year have been cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic, the Ballina fireys will be keeping one Anzac tradition alive.
The fireys have for many years sounded the alarm at 5am to call people to the Ballina dawn service.
Station commander, Captain Dennis Henry, said the tradition dates back to the time when the station first had a siren installed, but he couldn't say what year that was.
"It's been going for many, many years," he said.
"It dates back to when the brigade captain lived at the fire station (the old station in Crane St).
"But our records don't show exactly what year it started."
The old fire station in Crane St, which is now Ignite Studios, was centrally located, but the Anzac tradition has continued at the new station on Tamarind Dr.
There won't be a dawn service in Ballina so Capt Henry said the timing of the sounding of the siren this year would be adjusted to 6am.
And that is being done to fit in with a national campaign for people to stand at their driveways for a minutes' silence at 6am on Anzac Day as a tribute to all those who have served the country.
Meanwhile, pipers and buglers around the country are also encouraged to play a lament or Last Post, respectively, on their driveways at that time.
So don't be alarmed if you hear the bagpipes or a bugle sound in the early hours of Anzac Day, particularly in Ballina where some members of the Ballina Pipe Band have committed to playing their part in the stand at your driveway tribute.
Pipe Bands Australia also is encouraging pipers around the country to play Amazing Grace at home at 11am on Anzac Day, which is the time when the formal commemoration services are held following the Anzac Day parades in towns around Australia.