The Ilderton volunteer fire department inception dates back to the year 1950. Ironically, the original fire hall location and the fire department formation is related to one of Ilderton’s largest fires.
The I.O.O.F. hall was built on Main street in 1887 and had hosted many community gatherings. On a winter’s morning in 1947 a fire broke out and quickly turned the hall to smoldering rubble within minutes. The flames fanned by wind sent embers that spread to adjoining buildings, destroying a nearby home. The fire was quickly spreading to the nearby Presbyterian Church but luckily it was saved by firemen. The firemen had to fight the fire from the attic since no ladders could reach the roof. Ilderton’s fire equipment then consisted of two old soda-acid water tanks mounted on wheels and pulled by hand.
Had it not been for wind blowing in the opposite direction, every building on Ilderton’s main street could have been lost. The firemen that saved the town came from miles away and were company No.4 of the London Fire Department. This pivotal event had made it obvious there was a need for better fire protection for Ilderton and area.
A board was organized to establish a volunteer fire department for Ilderton. So in 1950, with the help of local donations, a new fire hall called London Township No.2 opened. Ironically, it was built on the site where 3 years previous the I.O.O.F hall had burned down. The first district Fire Chief was Bert Scarborough and assistant Chiefs were Glenn Reeve and Cecil Walls. This hall location was used for the next 53 years until 2003 where a new fire station was officially opened on Hyde Park Road. The original building is now used as a dental office.
Photo Circa 1962
Back row – K.Scarborough, M.Gregory, B.Hodgins, N.Johns, B.Beadle, K.McNeil, K.Bice, F.Prebble, C.Gregory, L.Fischer
Front row – S.McNair, A.J.Paisley, G.Reeve, C.Grieve, B.Scarborough, W.Goddard, A.Stewart, W.Douglas, W.Hull, D.MacKenzie, B.Bice
Delivery Certificate from Lafrance for the apparatus above dated June 6, 1962 signed by Fire Chief Bert Scarborough.