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Town proposes plan for fire museum at old Epping station

Union Leader Correspondent

January 10. 2018 11:42PM
The fire department hopes to turn the old central fire station on Main Street in Epping into a fire museum. (Jason Schreiber/Union Leader Correspondent)

The old central fire station in Epping was built in 1935 and could become a fire museum if voters approve. (Jason Schreiber)

EPPING — The fire department is hoping to turn an old fire station on Main Street into a museum.

Selectmen agreed last week to propose a warrant article asking voters in March to support the plan to use the abandoned central station built in 1935 as a fire museum to house antique equipment.

The department currently operates out of a public safety complex but stores its 1924 REO Speed Wagon fire truck and a 1860 hand pump at a small station in West Epping that’s undergoing renovations. Fire officials plan to relocate the apparatus to the new museum if approved by voters.

Fire Capt. Cliff Cray told selectmen that moving the old equipment to the museum would provide additional room at the West Epping station for an ambulance.

Cray said the plan is to put glass doors on the front of the old station with improved lighting to make the antique equipment more visible to the public.

The highway department, which stores some of its equipment in the old station, would still be allowed to use it for storage.

Cray said the Epping Historical Society may also be able to use the station.

The hope, Cray said, is to make the building “usable and something the town could be proud of.”

Selectman Bob Jordan said he supports the idea of a museum, which would give the fire department a chance to showcase its antiques.

“Really, unless they come out in a parade nobody gets to see them,” he told the board.

According to Cray, the costs associated with the museum would be minimal. The fire department hopes to raise some money that might help cover the cost of the new doors.

Selectman Tom Gauthier, board chairman, said he also feels the building has historic value and using it as a museum would be appropriate.

Selectman Tom Dwyer was supportive as well, but insisted that any proposal to make it a museum should be approved by voters.

The board voted unanimously to draft a warrant article for the March warrant.

General News Public Safety Epping

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