Makan – No. 185
Official Organ of the 2/30th Bn. A.I.F. Association
Australia has made rapid progress since the landing at Sydney Cove of Naval Commander Arthur Phillip, the first Governor of the colony.
In the formative years of the penal settlement, extreme privations were experienced by convicts and free settlers alike. Drought and consequent shortages of food compelled assaults on the threatening natural barrier of the Great Dividing Range to the west.
The successful conquest of the Blue Mountains (as we now know them) in 1813 by Blaxland, Wentworth and Lawson was a forerunner to the foundation of Bathurst, proclaimed by Governor Macquarie as a town site on May 7, 1815.
Bathurst became a vibrant settlement within fertile plain country. From that day of foundation on, Bathurst seemed destined to figure prominently in the history of New South Wales. It can be truly said that the founding of Bathurst heralded the opening of the inland of Australia.
So much for its early history about which much has been written
What are our thoughts about it? We would, I imagine, think of it with a great deal of affection because of the challenges it presented to us during one of the most formative periods in our lives. We would remember it largely as a place of intensive training, of gruelling cross country marches, dusty ploughed fields and dongas, clinging Bathurst burrs and barbed wire fences, blistered feet and aching muscles, bitterly cold nights and snow at Sunny Corner. Of night exercises in which we had to flog ourselves to beat the cold and the simulated enemy, and of keen but friendly rivalry between the units that made up the 27th Brigade in training. We also remember it as a place of lively experiences on our many visits to Bathurst city, of genuine and generous hospitality and entertainment extended to us by the people of Bathurst, and of the cementing of strong friendships amongst ourselves.
What of Bathurst now ? Will you come and see for yourselves ?
There has been considerable expansion in the city and district since we departed from there to go overseas in July, 1941.
Bathurst has developed into a "solid" city with a bright future.
Apart from its economic achievements, a major contributing factor to its stability and well being is the influence of its many educational institutions - both Governmental and denominational.
The Bathurst people have a justifiable pride in their beautiful city and its attractions and we can be certain they will give us a warm-hearted welcome when we forgather there for our reunion on Saturday, 22nd November next.
Don't hesitate. Decide now. Fill in the application form in the centre of "Makan" and post today to:
R.W. Jack, Box 18, P.O., Brookvale. N.S.W. 2100
JACK BROOKS, A Coy, passed away early in July in his 62nd year. Jack, pictured with The Old Man and other 8th Div. comrades in the last issue of "Makan" was among 81 veterans too ill to march on Anzac Day but who rode in cars ahead of the procession.
His funeral was attended by Wal Scott, Jimmy Walker and Frank Hannan. Vale Jack! A good soldier, proud of his unit.
HUGH FRASER, A Coy, aged 54, passed away on 6th August. Tall, quietly spoken and unassuming, Hugh had a sincere sense of comradeship and understanding. Many of us who knew him well were shocked when we learned of his untimely passing. Jack Black, Jack Boss, and Kevin Ward, who repeated the Ode at the service, attended the funeral on behalf of the Bn. Association.
H. AUBREY LANSDOWNE, H.Q. Coy, aged 60, died on 24th June and was cremated in Sydney. At the time of his death he was living in Woy Woy where he was well regarded by a wide circle of friends. He was a Staff Sergeant in the Bn., competent, experienced and highly esteemed by his mates.
HARRY G. WEBBER, C Coy, would have been 63 in September. His death was noticed in "Reveille". Harry, as some of us remember him, was a reckless type of bloke who was involved in several escapades resulting from his effervescent character. Harry played it hard during his lifetime and would have lived a full life. One would not have expected a man of his make-up to reach a ripe old age.
To the families of our above listed "Elder Brethren" we extend our sincere sympathy.
LEST WE FORGET
Kevin Ward reports Alex Seymour, H.Q. Coy, is the only one at present in hospital. He was the subject of a delicate heart operation by Dr. Winsor at St . Vincent's Hospital before being returned to R.G.H. Concord. His condition is said to be improving slightly.
Since we last went to press the following have been patients at R.G.H. and visited:
Brigadier Sir Frederick Galleghan, Dave Jordan, F.J. "Tommy" Evans, Stuart Plowes, Eric J. Simmons, Bernie McMahon, Ron "Porky" Moore, Lou Brown, and Neil Huntley.
Both The Old Man, at R.G.H., and Jack Boss at Ryde District Soldiers' Memorial Hospital had heart attacks and went through the stage of being critically ill. Both have, however, fought their way back to reasonable health and, thanks to God, are again able to face up to the trials of this day and age once again with almost normal assurance and optimism. The Old Man is attending his office in the city again and Jack, although taking it easy for a while, is getting stronger every day.
Lou Brown is believed to be convalescing out at Randwick.
Bob Jack, Jack Black and Ron Stoner, representing the Bn. Association, travelled to Bathurst on 3rd August and in consultation with Col Watson, the popular Manager Secretary of the Bathurst R.S.L Club, and Max Musgrove, the Club's Treasurer, furthered arrangements for this year's reunion. Together with Col and Max they later conferred with Clive Osborne, M.L.A. , the President of both the Bathurst Sub-Branch and the Club and can state unequivocally that this reunion is going to be truly terrific - the greatest!
The Bathurst R.S.L. people have become legend for those of our fellows who have each year on Anzac Day visited Bathurst to participate in the Service at the Cairns. For hospitality they have no peers and with the luxurious R.S.L. Club premises available for our dinner and temporary use before and after, coupled with all there is to see and do in the lovely city of Bathurst there is no doubt our reunion this year will be an unforgettable experience.
Elsewhere we have noted accommodation available. All you have to do is send in, without delay, your registration form.
Arrangements made by your organising committee will be the subject of further discussion at the next Bn. Association Executive meeting being held on 14th August, and you will be given more detailed advices regarding the reunion programme and other highlights in the September "Makan".
Whilst in Bathurst the three Bn. representatives called on our old friend Herb Pratley at his "Yarras" homestead. Although he is not in the best of health, he has offered his goodwill and practical support in preparing the Cairn for the reunion function which will take place at the entrance to our old camp on Sunday morning, 23rd November.
To enable firm arrangements to be made it would be appreciated if your registration form is completed and in the hands of Bob Jack, together with $2.00, by 22nd September at latest.
Also please indicate your accommodation requirements on the form before it becomes too late to satisfy your preferences. The full cost of the reunion dinner, available to all 2/30 Bn. and adult members of their families visiting Bathurst with them, including drinks with a good three course meal and coffee, will be $3.50 per head. You may remit this in full to Bob Jack now or pay in Bathurst, less the $2.00 forwarded with your registration form.
PARS ABOUT PEOPLE WE KNOW
Freda, wife of Ray "Andy" Knox, C Coy, sent in his subs and told us that Andy is not having the best sort of health just now. We hope that when Freda writes us more fully, as she has promised to do, Andy will have been restored to normal vigour for one of his age.
Ray Godbolt, D Coy, over many years has moved south from his former country haunts around Wingham and Bulahdelah. He is now a seasoned (that doesn't allude to your complaint about getting old, Ray) suburban dweller at Merewether but maintains his interest in the outdoors through his strong association with organised bike riding. His eldest son was a great bike rider before he was killed in an accident in 1966, and Ray retains his interest in the sport as handicapper for the Newcastle Police Boys Club. He regrets he will be unable to attend the Bathurst reunion this year as on that particular weekend every year a memorial bike race is run in memory of his son and the Godbolt's regard it as a family memorial occasion.
Ray expressed his delight with The Old Man's knighthood and reckons it is one of the greatest things that has ever happened to the Battalion. He aims to join us all at Sydney next Anzac Day. He tells us he sees Don Schumacher, D Coy, and his wife fairly frequently.
Cec Palmer, H.Q. Coy, has health limitations and has had to give up heavy outside work. He is now employed as a storeman by Scone Shire Council but is still apparently a farmer at heart.
Another deep-rooted man of the land, A.T.R. "Tom" Piper, B Coy, due to failing health, has had to sell his farm and move into town. He has been granted a T.P.I pension and has settled down in Orange.
M.R.E. "Dick" Fisher, A Coy, one of the three pictured at R.G.H in the last issue of "Makan", wrote from Lemon Tree Passage, in the Port Stephens area, enclosing his subs.
He says, in the usual laconic style of most of those sending in subs, "I have no news. It is a bit out of the way up here but if I get any snippets I will most certainly let you know. " How about a few fish stories, Dick ?
Clive Osborne, MLA, the dynamic local State Member for Bathurst, who became well known to many members of the Bn. Association when he attended our 1968 Reunion at the Metropole, accorded Bob Jack, Jack Black and myself a pleasing reception at the Bathurst R.S.L Club on Saturday night during Bank Holiday weekend. On his regular weekly report to his constituents over the local radio station on the following Sunday morning at 7.50 a.m. he referred to his meeting with the 3 representatives of the 2/30 Bn. in Bathurst to make arrangements for the reunion to be held later this year, and mentioned that many Bathurst people would remember that this Bn. trained in Bathurst before leaving for Malaya in 1941. He ended by saying, for our consumption no doubt: "I would like to welcome these fellows to Bathurst but I doubt if they would be out of bed yet". We'd have been sleeping our heads off and bored indeed if we had still been in bed at that time despite the warmth and comfort of the motel beds.
To tell the truth there's so much of interest to see in Bathurst these days that we didn't want to waste whacking good daylight and sunshine on bashing the spine as we are wont to do on Sundays - if our families let us!
H.L. "Baldy" Barnes, H.Q. Coy, writing from Queensland says: "I've been as busy as hell lately. Have just bought an old Coconut Plantation just south of Cairns and am in the throes of selling out here."
The appeal with last "Makan" for payment of subs produced a number of remittances and some accompanying letters from fellows we haven't heard from for years. It also disclosed some changes of address. After the financial drought our Treasurer, Jack Boss, is like a dairy farmer after rain. He's pleased to see the cows are producing a bit more for the bucket and that there is still plenty of clover about.
One of country notorieties wrote in as follows:
"Please convey my congratulations to Bruce Ford for the note he sent me in the last "Makan" for not paying my subs. It was a classic. Only a bank man could pen such a beauty. As I was 4 years in arrears I had better pay up four years ahead so that should make me square. "
Bob Newman, H.Q. Coy, mentor and oft times menace of the Woolgoolga banana growing gentry, said he had Cliff Lyons, No.4 Platoon, to see him recently. Of Cliff he says: "He joined the Bn. at Tamworth and was discharged as unfit at Bathurst. His main claim to fame was that he believed he was the only man in the unit to bite the Old Man successfully for money. It was 4/- and the place (if my memory is correct) was in the train when it broke down on our trip from Tamworth to Bathurst." Bob says, "If all goes well I will be going to Bathurst." (All systems go well for Bathurst, Bob. We'll be seeing you. Ed.)
Dick and Anne Tompson and their two fine sons, Col "Squire" and Kath O'Donnell and Bill "Grandpa" and Sylvia Rooke foregathered in the home of Ken and Betty Parry at Chermside, Brisbane, recently. Bob Kelsey of the 2/26 Bn and his wife were also there to leaven the 2/30th flavour of the gathering. I guess there would have been a great deal of talk that night. Betty Parry, in a note to Bessie Ellis, mentioned: "So many reminiscences! But we realised that even though the men's meetings may in some cases be years apart the comradeship is as strong as ever. "
(These mini reunions are a grand idea. Let's hope as time goes on we hear reports of more and more of them. Ed.)
Jim Strang, the indomitable young "C Coy" bloke who battled his way through University when we returned to Australia and is now Technical Agronomist (Weeds Section) in the Department of Agriculture was recently, The Old Man informed me, elected Chairman of the Noxious Plants Committee of N. S. W. adding to the already heavy load of responsibility he has been carrying as head of his section. Jim's son, Alex, now 19, gained a Commonwealth Scholarship and is progressing with Strang-like capacity and tenacity through 2nd Year Chemical Engineering at Sydney University. Daughter, Lucy, (8) is attending Primary School.
Arthur Carroll, A Coy, wrote enclosing subs from somewhere along the lonely road between Kyogle and Woodenbong wishing the Bn. Association every success. Arthur just might have given us some news about himself and family but, being a man of a few words, just didn't. Not this time, anyway.
Accommodation at present available:
MOTELS In order of close proximity to R.S.L Club.
Zebra-American: 25 units (singles, doubles, twins & family). We have booked out the entire motel for Saturday night, 22nd November and recommend that all children stay at this motel where arrangements will be made for them to be supervised during Bn. dinner period on Saturday night.
Persons: 1, 2, 3, Children under 12. Tariff: B&B - $6.00 to $7.25, $10.75, $13.75. Concession
Central: (MFA rating) 27 units (No singles available). Tariff: B&B - $10.70, $15.15, Concession
Bathurst: (New. Rooms luxurious). Tariff: B&B from $8.00 fr. $11.50 fr. $15.00 Concession
Sunstrip: (MFA) Blayney Rd. over a mile out from R.S.L Club. Tariff: B&B - $7.00, $10.00, $13.50, Concession
Zebra Capri: (MFA) Opposite Sunstrip, Blayney Road. Tariff: B&B - $5.75, $10.25, $13.25 - Concession
If you have made your own bookings already please let Bob Jack know. Please note that from now on all bookings at Zebra American are to be made through R.W. Jack. Accommodation available will be allocated in order of receipt of registration forms with preference given to Zebra American followed by Motel Central unless other accommodation is specified.
HOTELS (Licensed) : In
order of close proximity to R.S.L. Club.
Tourist: Main St. Limited number of twin-bedded rooms only. B&B - $3.50 per person. Fair class accommodation.
If own caravan used - camping fee 80 cents per day. Electricity 25 cents per day. The Caravan Park has 6 stationary vans for overnight hire - prices per night available on application to Mr. Harvey at Caravan Park Kiosk.
AIR East-West Airlines - Sydney - Bathurst Fare: $10.20 single. Depart Sydney - Sat. 6.45 a.m. Arrive Bathurst - 7.25 a.m.
Return journey by car - there could be seats available with returning Bn. members, or by plane leaving Bathurst 7.05 pm on Sunday evening arriving Sydney 7.45 p.m.
RAIL: Fares from Sydney: Single, Return. 1st Class, 2nd Class. $5.67, $3.96, $8.51, $5.94
Central West Express leaves Sydney on Saturdays 8.00 a.m. arriving Bathurst 12.09 p.m. This is a very comfortable air-conditioned train with tray service available throughout the trip.
A return train leaves Bathurst on Sunday at 3.44 p.m. arriving Sydney at 8.32 p. m.
AIR - from Coolangatta with overnight stay in Sydney.
Air fare - Coolangatta - Sydney, Economy Class $22. 80 Planes leave Coolangatta frequently during the day on Friday, 21st November.
BUS: Pioneer Express from Brisbane via Gold Coast is a convenient and economical way of travelling.
Buses leave Surfers' Paradise at 3.05 p.m. daily and arrive Sydney the following day at 7.00 a. m. Also at 9.05 p.m. arriving Sydney the following day at 1.00 p.m.
Return buses leave Sydney at 3.00 p. m. and 11.15 p.m. respectively for Brisbane via Gold Coast.
Fares: $12.80 (single) $24.10 (return)
A Charter Flight for transporting 10 persons from Coolangatta/Lismore to Bathurst for the Reunion has been quoted as follows:
Using two Cessna 205 206 aircraft (5-seater) travelling direct, non-stop from Coolangatta - Bathurst - Coolangatta - $265.00 per aircraft.
Travelling Lismore - Bathurst - Lismore plus ferry from Coolangatta - Lismore - Coolangatta - $265.00 per aircraft.
Both quotes, given by Lanhams Air Taxi Service, Coolangatta, are subject to addition of pilot's overnight expenses plus waiting time over 6 daylight hours. Assuming there are 10 persons, this works out at $53.00 per head plus expenses as stated above.
Aircraft as single-engined aircraft and operate a VFR service - i.e. they fly during daylight hours and in reasonably fine weather.
Any of our Far North Coast members interested in joining such a charter flight are requested to advise both Bruce Ford (address on front page of "Makan") and Jock Logan, Palm Beach, Queensland.
See you at Bathurst.
Notes for the Re-Union
When I get to Bathurst I
must look up...........and...........and...........
*show ‘em the family pics
* NOT FORGET TO GO!.