No. 1 Firehouse Enters Final Stages of Repair

By Amy Jeanroy

Pictured above are Tony Noyes, Dick Barnard, Jim Porter and Gary (Tex) Young. (Photo by Amy Jeanroy)


Dick Barnard sat down with The Calais Advertiser to give an update on the No. 1 Firehouse's progress.

“We have done quite a bit of work to the building over the summer, says Barnard, speaking of the renovations that were completed in the main and side room on the upper level of the building. “Work is being done in the front bedroom and another side room of that as well, with that work being done this winter, finishing the upstairs completely.”

The next stage is to move into the truck bay. An engineer will be brought in to be sure that the floor will hold the two trucks they want to be stored; the 1916 and the 1916 Max. Finally, front doors will be added to the building and the ceiling will be raised in the bay.  After some small cosmetic touch ups, the firehouse will be completed.  

“We think it's just appropriate to thank all the public and the area businesses in supporting us from the $2 donation from someone just walking in, to the fundraisers, all of it is much appreciated.”

It's not just the inside that has been getting a facelift. Barnard says the outside of the building has been getting much needed repairs as well. 

“Currently, we are repointing all the bricks on the building. That will complete the outside. When we first took over the building, the walls and ceilings leaked. The tower was leaning. These problems are all fixed.”

It has been a long process to get to this point. The numerous repairs have taken 13 years, being done in small steps as they became financially possible.  

The building will ultimately become a fire museum to be enjoyed by the community and visitors to the city. 

Gary Young  of Just South of The Border is managing the repointing of the bricks on the outside of the building. He estimates they would be done with the brickwork in the next 2-3 weeks. Once the job is finished, it will last another 30 years. 

The No 1 Firehouse is a well loved space, hosting annual parties and dinners that are popular with everyone. 

To help offset the cost of upkeep on the building, Young has also offered to begin doing regular fundraisers at Just South of The Border. The first one is  a barbecue and is coming up on October 15th. 

“It may be another year or even two before we are completely finished with this building,” says Barnard, but there is a light at the end of the tunnel.”