Published here is a short summary of A&DHS meetings over the past twelve months. Note that due to the coronavirus pandemic, future meetings have been cancelled until further notice. More detail of our past meetings can be found by going to Our Bulletin.
September 2020 Meeting
Gaye Pattison, Chief of Staff at ABC Goulburn Murray, gave as a brief overview of the history of ABC radio in Albury before explaining that it is now much more than a radio station with a multimedia output of radio, TV and digital. She then went on to describe the role of ABC Goulburn Murray during the recent bushfires and the Covid pandemic.
We then heard from Albury Botanic Gardens curator, Jason Kimball. He described his role , what has changed in his time at the Gardens. We then heard about changes that are planned and in particular, the review of their Conservation Management Plan.
August 2020 Meeting
Our first meeting since March due to Covid-19 restrictions was very welcome and good to get back to some sort of normal even though some members were trapped south of the Border, unable to cross.
The meeting got under way with the Annual General Meeting of the Society, chaired by Greg Ryan, in The Elizabeth Room of the Commercial Club. Twenty six members and guests were in attendance and there were fourteen apologies. Minutes of the previous AGM were read and confirmed and the President’s Annual Report received together with the Treasurer’s end of year report. Greg called Society Patron Greg Aplin to the chair where he declared all positions vacant and those duly elected were:
President: Greg Ryan;
Vice President: position not filled;
Secretary: Helen Livsey;
Minute Secretary: Jill Wooding;
Treasurer: Simon Burgess;
Committee: Marion Taylor, Dennis Hickey, Colin McAulay, Ashley Edwards, Ralph Simpfendorfer and Sue Haberfield.
Greg took the chair again and a motion recommending that no change be made to subscription fees was passed.
Following the AGM, our guest speaker, Graham Docksey OAM, JP described changes that have been made to the Albury War Memorial. His talk highlighted the significance of the Memorial to the people of Albury and the work done by Chris McQuellin and RSL members to ensure that wording on memorial plaques at the site are both accurate and complete. He then went on to describe proposals for changes at the War Memorial Bowl and asked us for input into design plans.
March 2020 Meeting
Former Federal Member of Parliament for Indi, Cathy McGowan, outlined her own personal journey and challenged us to consider what can be done to recognise the displaced indigenous communities of north-east Victoria. In order to do this, we must look at the history of white settlement and how it impacted on the region’s first inhabitants.
February 2020 Meeting
Claire Doolan has an Honours Degree in Archaeology from University of New England in Armidale, with thesis entitled: Rock art research in the North-east Granites of Victoria.
Claire gave us a very informative trip around rock art of various sites. She outlined modern techniques used to enhance the photographs of images – detail is revealed that is not present in our viewing of the original photo. Claire described techniques used to estimate the age of the art and clearly explained the significance of the images. Many of us went away with the urge to do our own exploration of the sites.
December 2019 Meeting
Elected in March 2019 to represent the Albury Electorate in NSW Parliament, Justin Clancy spoke of the Clancy family’s Irish origins and their long association with the Albury District.
Then a December favourite, “Show & Tell” – we heard about a surveyor on the future Hume Dam site, the location of the junction of the Murray and Mitta Mitta Rivers now under the Hume Dam, a notebook/diary kept by an early Bowna/Mullengandra resident, A British Empire Medal recipient, Wilson Cordial labels and more.
November 2019 Meeting
Graeme Hind, who had a long career in water management including at Hume Dam and with Murray Darling Basin Authority, was guest speaker at our November meeting. His talk focused on the function of the Hume Dam within the Murray Darling Basin and on modifications made to the dam in more recent decades.
We also heard from Society member Portia Dilena – Portia is a Research Officer at Charles Sturt University looking at the history of Higher Education in Albury-Wodonga focusing on CSU and its precursor the Riverina College of Advanced Education.
October 2019 Meeting
Dr Penny Vine was our guest speaker, telling us about some of the hurdles faced by newly arrived refugees from African countries and from Bhutan as they adjust to life in Australia. She made the point that they were no longer refugees but locals with a refugee background. Penny highlighted some of the challenges they faced in their home countries before coming to our area before relating some stories of their success in adapting to life in Albury Wodonga.
The meeting then heard from Bruce Pennay, outlining how the Society is preparing for the Centenary of turning the first sod at the Hume Dam. Bruce pointed out that the story of Hume Dam falls conventionally within three frames: stories of a political achievement, an engineering achievement, and an environmental challenge.
September 2019 Meeting
At our September meeting we heard from Chris de Vreeze talking about his arrival in Australia in 1952 as a young boy and Dutch immigrant, coming through the Bonegilla Reception Centre and then growing up in Albury. We had a large number of guests from the local Dutch community and several made their own contribution to the story of the Dutch in our local community. Museum curator Emma Williams then gave us a quick preview of what to expect when the exhibition ‘Albury & Australia’s Dutch Connections’ gets under way at Albury Library Museum on September 28.
The photo is of members of the Dutch community participating in a parade to celebrate 150 years of Lavington in 1957.