From the early days of settlement on the goldfields, the need for an efficient fire service was necessary. Wooden buildings and shanties were hastily erected, in close proximity to one another. Fires destroyed many buildings, especially hotels! The Shortland and Grahamstown Fire Brigades were established - the forerunners of the Thames Volunteer Fire Brigade that exists today.
A full history is on the website of The Thames Volunteer Fire Brigade, along with a list of known Firemen.
In the Thames Star 5/11/1943 a photo was republished of a group of 1925 Firemen from Thames.
An 1899 photograph, shows members and images of the Fire Stations.
Source: 'Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, AWNS-18990714-3-1'
The 1899 Names mentioned in the above photograph are:
C. Warner; W McDermott; W Inglis; D Moran; A Billing; G Williams; Thomas Kerr; R McFarlane; W Addison; Dr Payne (Surgeon); Mr Gibbons; A Bateman; W H Shepherd; R R Menzies; D Garrett; R Johns; George Kenny; R McGregor; W Hammond; J McConnell; Hugh Macky; R Pearce; Thomas Redwood; F Moran; H Stone; T Eadner;
T Meehan; W Bane; E Alexander; W Grundy