Occasional Newsletter, June 2007
Here we are, staring into the face of the 2007/8 and it is already time for a review of 2006/7.
At the AGM we welcomed Committee member Denise Preston as Treasurer and also Carolyn Brammer and Margaret Jackson, who agreed to be on the Committee along with myself, Margaret Walker, Elizabeth Sparks and David Paxton, who is Secretary. Margaret Walker has recently resigned as Vice President, but fortunately stays on the Committee.
Since the AGM in October, the Society has arranged a birthday party for Matthew Flinders, which was held in March and was enjoyed by members and guests. The party also raised some $1,500 towards our costs and projects. We are now working with the Coochie Island Resort to help market tickets for the Flinders Day Ball, which will begin at 7-00pm on Saturday 14 July. Through the Progress Association we are involved with the parade, the markets and the re-enactment of Flinders’ landing on 15 July.
A project in which the Society is involved is the restoration of Trim, the Flinders Day dinghy. This is a joint project with the Progress Association and originally had core funding under a Community Development Grant through the Redland Shire Council. Restoration has taken more than two years and is nearly complete. Peter Büechse will spray-paint the exterior grey, in keeping with the dinghy’s naval heritage. The inside has been painted the colour of beach sand. Trim is in dry storage courtesy of John and Andrew McLennan. This year we shall again borrow Rob Virtue’s beautiful lapstrake dinghy for the re-enactment of Matthew Flinders’ landing, while Trim goes in the parade.
By a stroke of luck, Denise Preston met Paul Flomersfeld and his son Christopher on the barge one day; they told her that they are related to Matthew Flinders and were visiting the Island because of his visit over 200 years ago. David Paxton then met them and, later, Cate Flomersfeld, and discovered Christopher’s grand-parents (Aileen and Keith Thomsin of South Australia) will visit Queensland in June/July. This information of course led to an invitation on behalf of the Progress Association for the family to participate in activities on Flinders Day. We have invited Christopher to be in the boat with Matthew Flinders. Aileen has been invited to officially name Trim at a simple public ceremony at 11-00am 14 July at the Barefoot Bar of the Resort.
Thanks to Denise Preston, the Nev Dixon collection of letters hand written by Wal Rice to produce Sailors in Slouch Hats has been collated and bound in plastic sleeves. The efforts by Wal and Nev were outstanding, especially given that Wally Rice was terminally ill at that time. Loraine Dixon-Bone has given us a form of words for a plaque to mark the site of the Lone Pine, which Nev Dixon and others planted on 18 October 1997. You will remember that Wal’s daughter Leslie and her husband Ted attended our AGM in 2006.
The Society has purchased a brass plaque to mark the site of the cook-house of 43 Landing Craft Company in the first fairway of the Isle of Coochie Golf Club. The Club generously donated $100, being half the cost. The plaque will be set in to the cook-house concrete over the next few weeks, in consultation with the Club.
The Society’s page on coochieisland.com, which Grace Chu Te created, contains a short history of the Island and has attracted “hits” and follow-up.
Through the year, Ian Rowland has generously donated disks of photographs and videos of events on the Island. These are in store at the History Room, which recently also was pressed into absorbing artefacts which Merle Beckett had stored on her verandah. Kerry Downes has agreed to sew a new Queen Anne flag.
The Society subscribes to a wonderful new publication, Australian Heritage, and is organizing for the monthly magazine to be held in the Community Library. The Society is also a member of Brisbane’s Living Heritage Network of the Brisbane City Council and the Queensland Museum. We assisted with a visit by The Gap History Society and their dynamic secretary Richard Speechley, which has led to a reciprocal invitation. We contributed to the award winning Southern Moreton Bay Heritage Trail brochure managed by Tracy Ryan of Redland Shire Council Library and took Tracy on a tour of the track. The Society is also a financial member of History Queensland, which is the peak body of local and family history societies.
In 2007 we successfully applied to the Gambling Community Benefit Fund for a grant for furniture for the History Room. The cheque has just been received and we shall make purchases over the next few weeks. The grant is much appreciated and also the help we received from John English MP and his staff in applying for it.
Very recently changes have been made to the Associations Incorporation Act which will make life simpler for us. This means we no longer have to ask our auditor, Arthur Chaston, for his help in submitting annual reports to the Office of Fair Trading. Arthur’s inputs have been so important and so freely given that we shall miss his generous cooperation. Thank you, Arthur.
You might like to bring your annual subscriptions up to date, as they become due on 1 July. $10 for individual members and $15 for family members or $100 for life membership, please. David Paxton can be contacted as per the letterhead.