1964 Austin Hose Reel Tender Western Area Fire Brigade
The Fire Services Museum Trust, who run the National Fire Museum, have since the 1970’s stored their collection of vintage fire appliances at the old ordinance depot at Weedon.
Due to redevelopment in the area, they had to move out of their existing premises and into a smaller purpose built museum in Hampshire. Unable to house all of their collection, in May 2016 the Trust decided to auction off some of its surplus vehicles.
One of the appliances to be included in the auction was an Ex Western Area Fire Engine which served the retained fire station in Tarbert, Loch Fynne
This 1964 Hose Reel Tender, registration LSB 149 had been donated to the Weedon Museum just after the formation of Strathclyde Fire Brigade in 1975 as it was surplus to Brigade’s requirements at that time.
It is one of only three built and is believed to be the last one now in existence
Dave Adam chairman of the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service Heritage Trust contacted Neil Wallington, chairman of the Fire Service Museum Trust at Weedon about the possibility of returning this unique appliance to Scotland. After much discussion and because of the appliances, Scottish heritage, Neil agreed to approach the Board of Trustee’s about donating the appliance to SFRSHT.
With the auction just two days away, Neil contacted Dave to announce that the board at the Weedon museum had agreed to withdraw LSB 149 from the auction and it would be then donated to the SFRSHT.
The Heritage Trust arranged for LSB 149 to be transported by low loader back to Scotland.
Six members of the Trust travelled to the museum at Weedon where Neil Wallington had arranged an official handing over ceremony at which the vehicle and related documentation was formally passed over to Heritage Trust Chairman Dave Adam.
This unique appliance was delivered to the Heritage Trust warehouse where its volunteers proceeded to carry out some restoration and mechanical work to enable the vehicle to get taken out on display to the Trust’s many summer events