Blackball Volunteer Fire Brigade was originally formed in 1965. Today it covers the area from North Stillwater Brigade to Slatey Creek, west of the Grey River. The local terrain is very diverse. The Grey River, Blackball Plateau, Paparoa Ranges and National Park all bound Blackball. The Brigade has an establishment of 16 firefighters. Some members of the Brigade have served their local community for more than 25 years.
Blackball is situated on the West Coast of the South Island approximately 20kms north of Greymouth. Originally a stoping place for early goldminers, the town became established in the late 1800's when coal was discovered and a coal mine was opened. After some turbulent times the government regulated coal mine closed in the mid 1960's and coal mining ceased to be a way of life in Blackball. The population dropped from over 1000 to the under 500 people level it is at today. Some of the most spectacular walks are found near Blackball, in particular the Creosus Track.