WITH 30 years passing since the night Mount Macedon was ravaged by fire, the region is bracing to remember those who died and the emergency crews who helped prevent further tragedy.
The Ash Wednesday fires of February 16, 1983, claimed 75 lives and destroyed more than 3000 homes.
Locally, the fire spread from East Trentham to Mount Macedon, killing seven people, destroying more than 600 homes and buildings, and devastating wildlife and bushland.
Until the Black Saturday bushfires in 2009, they were the deadliest in Australia’s history.
Macedon Ranges Shire mayor Roger Jukes said the 30-year anniversary was a time for remembering the people who lost their lives, as well as acknowledging the enormous effort of emergency services personnel and community members who fought hard to restrict the fires spreading further.
“For our community, the legacy that Ash Wednesday and other major bushfires has left is an increased knowledge of what fire can do and acceptance of fire as a natural occurrence,” he said.
“We wish to acknowledge those who were affected by these devastating fires and celebrate the community’s efforts to work together to recover from this disaster.”