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In 1854 Volunteer Fire Brigades started forming throughout country Victoria.  First to be established were at Ballarat, Geelong, Castlemaine and Sandhurst (now Bendigo). The equipment used by these early brigades included the hand drawn hose reel.  The hose reels assisted in getting hose and other necessary equipment to the scene of a fire relatively quickly.  This was the catalyst for fire brigade competitions, as we now know them.  Brigades soon discovered their training and efficiency improved by engaging in training competition with neighboring brigades.

By 1872, local and district Fire Brigade Competitions were being held and in 1873 the first state wide brigade demonstration by metropolitan and country brigades was held in Melbourne. A torchlight procession of 460 fire-fighters paraded through the streets of Melbourne during the event.  In 1891 the Country Fire Brigades Board (predecessor to CFA) was created by the Government and Kyneton was the 7th Brigade to register.  On the back of the competition shirts, Kyneton has number 7. 
The Hose Reel is still used in today’s competition.  Materials and some rules may have changed but the current event “Hose and Reel Eights” would be recognised by the competitors from 1891. Other events have evolved using equipment from the current fire ground practices.  In 1891 there was an event, “Engine Practice for 3 men” which used the equipment of that time. Today events include the “Pumper and Ladder Fives” and “Hydrant and Pumper Fours”, each using hoses and vehicles that would be found in any current CFA Station. 
Kyneton has competed in these competitions for over 100 years.  Kyneton was the Champion Brigade of Victoria in 1925, 1926 and 1929.  In 2013, Kyneton came second in the C Section Aggregate to Horsham.  The team won 3 events and placed in others of the 13 events for the C Section.  A section and Champion Brigade winner was Kangaroo Flat. 

 

In 1974 at Castlemaine the 1st Junior Championship was held.  The Junior Fire Brigade competitions are conducted in 2 age groups, Under 14 and Under 17.  The criteria is that the competitor must be under that age on the 1st of October.  The Junior Events use static hose and each event has a different sequence to complete against the clock or another Brigade.  The Juniors don’t use the Hose Reel or Pumpers but 5 of their 9 events are the same as the Seniors.  

Kyneton has had a Junior Brigade since 1982.  In 1994 at Warrnambool, Kyneton won the Under 17 Aggregate and narrowly missed out to Maryvale for the title of Champion Brigade.  

The Kyneton Junior Brigade is open to Girls and Boys and the aim of the Brigade is to develop these young individuals in leadership, teamwork and respect through competitions and other activities.  The Junior program has developed members to go on to be valuable members of the community with their work and life choices.  The brigade is committed to look after and get the best out of each Junior.  

For more information visit:

http://www.cfa.vic.gov.au/volunteer-careers/junior-volunteers/

http://www.vfbv.com.au/index.php/champs/championships/history

http://news.cfa.vic.gov.au/news/2014-vfbv-senior-urban-champs.html

http://news.cfa.vic.gov.au/news/2014-urban-junior-champ-results.html

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