School News. Vale Jeremy King 3 March October Print Post Approved: PP

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1 School News No. 136 Vale Jeremy King 3 March October 2010 Summer 2010 Print Post Approved: PP

2 Old Southportonians Association Council 2010 Founded 1907 PRESIDENT: Bruce Wright (Rad ) VICE-PRESIDENT: Paul Wood (Del ) HON. SECRETARY: James Kennett (Wal ) HON. ASST. SECRETARY: Jock Beveridge (Atk ) HON. TREASURER: Damien Moffrey (Wal ) HON. ASST. TREASURER: Nathan Quartermaine (McK 96-99) Patron: Jake MacRonald (Tho ) IMMEDIATE PAST PRESIDENT: J. Carter (Kai ) NON EXECUTIVE COUNCIL MEMBERS: Hon. Editor-Review Bruce Rogers (McK ), Archivist/Website Scott Andrews (Wal ), Young Old Boys Representative Brodie Cunningham (Tho ) ELECTED COUNCIL MEMBERS: Ian Browne (Del ), John Hillier (Atk ), Christopher Johnstone (Bid ), Peter Lockhart (Tho 62-65), Ross Norman (Del ), Simon Nicholls (Tur ) Colin Underwood (Tho ) Paul Veivers (Del ), Thomas Paxton-Hall (Rad ), Tony Burchill (Rad ), Vaughan Oxenford (Mel ) OLD BOYS ON THE SCHOOL COUNCIL: F.D. Perrin (Rad ), V.B. Wright (Rad ), P.A Graham (Tho ) M.M.A Blumenstein (Mau ), G.C. Rix (Wal 72-77) SCHOOL ARCHIVIST: L.A.Walker Contents From the President 3 From the Headmaster 4 Editorial 5 Keeping in touch 5 YOBS 5 OSA Reunion Weekend 6 When red turns to green 10 Rain from Nowhere by Murray Hartin 11 Old Boy Numbers 11 AUDITOR: WHK Audit & Assurance, Carrara Street, Benowa EDITORIAL COMMITTEE: The Old Southportonians Review: Bruce Rogers (McK ) K Hailey (OSA Coordinator) LAYOUT & DESIGN: Market Focus Communications (MFC) BRANCH OFFICE REPRESENTATIVES: BRISBANE: J. MacAulay (Del 94-96) D. Fielding (McK 83-87) CENTRAL WEST NEW SOUTH WALES: R. Nicholls (Tur 80-88) CENTRAL WEST QUEENSLAND: W. Chandler (Del 48-58)J. Macmillan (Del 83-86), B. Battersby (Kai 77-79) DARLING DOWNS: B. Battersby (Kai 77-79), D. Greenup (Del 82-86) FAR NORTH QUEENSLAND: T. McInnes (McK 80-86), M. Trout (Kai 76-80) HONG KONG: Est.2005: W. Parfitt (McK 78-82), Kay Hastie (Ex TSS Staff), B. Michael (Rad 80-93) LOCKYER VALLEY: Est.1995: A.G.M. Kemp (Tho ) Mrs A.A. Kemp LONDON: Est. 2007: D.G. Serafini (Mel ), S. Douglas (Del 08), C. Faes (Tur 83-84) MACKAY: G. McKinnon (Tur 80-84) NEW ZEALAND: R. Mehta (McK 88-92), J. McIlwain (McK 75-83) NORTHERN RIVERS NSW: P. Kerkenezov (Del ) NORTHERN TERRITORY: N. Eames (Mel 81-88) OSA Races 12 Branches News 13 Branch Gatherings for Hidden Creek 14 Outback Tour 15 Rowing News 19 Reflections Hosted by Bert Cockerill 20 Mentoring Program 21 Weddings, Births and Baptisms 22 NORTH QUEENSLAND: R.A.W. Lyne (Tho ) PAPUA NEW GUINEA: C. Burgess (Kai 85-88) ROCKHAMPTON: D.J.D. Rodgers (McK ) ROMA: N. Cameron (Bid 85-89), S. Gray (McK 76-80), T.R.W. Cooper (Del 84-88) SINGAPORE:. C. Poetzscher (Wal 83-87) SOUTH AUSTRALIA: Est. 2008: H. Muller (McK ) D. Jones (Del ) SOUTH WEST QUEENSLAND: S. Fraser (McK 71-74), G. Webster (Tho 57-63) STANTHORPE: P.C. Blundell (Tho ) SUNSHINE COAST: M. Elks (Del 73-74) SYDNEY: Est.1926 J.M. Hawker (McK , I. Lambert (Wal 74-78) UNITED STATES OF AMERICA: L. Cochran (Wal 72-75) VICTORIA: W.N. Adderley (Del ) L. Meerkin (JS ), WESTERN AUSTRALIA: S.J. Conran (Bid ) WIDE BAY: D. McIver (Del 48-52), D. Chandler (Del 87-92) HIDDEN CREEK: Manager Clinton Cronk Enquires: (02) OSA Office OSA Coordinator Mrs Kris Hailey: The Southport School Winchester Street SOUTHPORT QLD 4215 Phone: Fax: WEBLINK: Oldest Old Boy 23 Memories 23 Commemorative Old Old Boys Tie 26 What are they up to now? 27 Sportsmen making news 32 School News 34 Obituaries 36 Jeremy King 41 2 T h e O l d S o u t h p o r to n i a n s A s s o c i at i o n

3 From the President >> In the context of my last Report as OSA President (this time around), it has been my privilege to be of service to our Association in this capacity, as there are so many great people linked to The Southport School that I have had the opportunity to contact over this second year which has indeed been a journey. This edition of the OSA Review I hope will answer some of the questions I have been asked along the way of What is the OSA and what does it do? It is in fact quite fitting that this edition will be distributed to a larger audience both in Old Boys and the entire School Community and is probably the best illustration we have produced that answers these questions. This is a living document which publishes everything that is great within our School and through our diverse network of Old Boys. It is also a place where we remember too many of our Old Boys whom are no longer with us. This year has been especially difficult not only as President of the OSA but for me personally, with the passing of Erle Cardow and most recently Jeremy King whom I will miss the most. All these Old Boys continued to hold the values of TSS close to their heart and we should celebrate the contribution each has made while as a student and since, as custodians of the History and Traditions that make this such a great School. One of the many highlights has been the Older Old Boys Tie and for almost 400 Old Southportonians who entered TSS 60 or more years ago, we presented either at the special Older Old Boys Assembly or subsequently mailed the Tie, which so many have written back to express their heartfelt thanks and pride to wear what signifies the partnership between TSS and the OSA as well the gold band that signifies the history and wisdom of these gentlemen. On that note I also took the opportunity while in Cairns for the Branch function, to visit Mr Jack Warner, our oldest Old Boy, whom Jeremy King had mentioned to me on numerous occasions when discussing the Rowing Dinner and past crews. It was a special moment for me to present the Tie and a photo of the School to Mr Warner who is 107 years young (McK ). While more details will be available in the Executive Report of the OSA Annual General Meeting, the OSA Council has produced its first Strategic Plan, an audit of the accounts and a rejuvenated Branch Network. We now have 20 Branches re-engaged around Australia and Internationally, and a total of 15 Branch functions were held in We have launched our new e-newsletters with four scheduled for The website supported by our new Online Community program provides interaction with OSA members able to use the program for business networking, directories, reunions, even footy tipping. This enables the OSA to more effectively communicate and support our Old Boys and their families. The OSA manages approximately $1million in Memorial and General Funds, most of which has been as a result of Bequests, where the OSA has established endowments on request, offering funds back to the School in perpetuity. This includes a growing range of assistance to the School family in the form of bursary and library funds through to the Scholarship Fund and the most recently established J. C. King Memorial Rowing Fund. The OSA has also established a link to the Bendigo Bank which offers the OSA a contribution to a Community Fund distributed back to the OSA as a bonus for any person/company that nominates a link with the OSA (further details are available at the OSA Office). While our Branches are now very active, Reunions and Events have also been high on the agenda with a very successful Old Boys Weekend that saw more than 600 Old Boy registrations, from the Older Old Boys Assembly, McWhirter Cup Golf Day, YOBS drinks, Bush Barbecue with James Blundell performing (with father Peter adding some great bush poetry and Five-Year Reunion Groups), 10-Year Reunion Dinner and Founder s Chapel Service. Added to that was TSS Rugby First XV sharing the Premiership on the same day in front of a very large crowd which included many Old Boys. We also took the opportunity to formally present our new Patron Mr Jake MacRonald as well as Jeremy King with his Mervyn Dane Collings Award. More recently, the OSA Race Day held at the Gold Coast Turf Club was a success with 185 attending and, apart from being a great day for all, who attended, raised dollars to support such initiatives as Bursaries, Hidden Creek and Pastoral Support. Many of you would have already seen details of the Spirit of the Bush Tour Following the Footsteps of the Founder I am sure in re-establishing these country connections, the School s commitment to country boarding is as strong as I can ever remember it. The OSA has also reaffirmed this position to encompass a strategy to work with the School to strengthen the number of Old Boys sending their sons to TSS from the current figure of eight per cent to 15 per cent over the next five years. This compares to current levels at ACGS of 17 per cent and Shore (Sydney) 23 per cent. For any Old Boy, the Generations that pass through TSS are important on many levels and I encourage you to find out more through the OSA Office or Admissions. Please read and enjoy this edition of the OSA Review, as I hope it provides you with further insight of what the OSA is all about. As a voluntary organisation we have many supporters and contributors that make it such a success. I therefore wish to sincerely thank our OSA Council, all the Branch representatives and the wider base of OSA volunteers that have contributed. I also thank Mrs Kris Hailey our fulltime OSA Coordinator for her dedication and ability to ensure all activities have been delivered so successfully. I also wish to acknowledge the support and commitment of Mr Greg Wain our Headmaster, Gerry Northausen Foundation Coordinator, Kerry Eddowes, the Market Focus Communications Pty Ltd and TSS Marketing, Archives & Admissions teams for the assistance provided. Please subscribe to the communications systems provided by the OSA including our Website and Facebook and ensure you have yours and your mates details up to date. The OSA AGM will be held November 29 with Reports on-line. Finally, I wish everyone in our special community a very safe and merry Christmas and we hope to see you at an OSA function near you, sometime soon. Sincerely, V. Bruce Wright 3

4 from the headmaster >> Vale Mr King It was with great sadness that we received the news that Jeremy King had passed away following a five day battle in Intensive Care. Within the TSS community, Jeremy will be best remembered as a legendary rowing coach and a passionate Old Boy who was, over decades, one of the true guardians of our history and traditions. During his time as a boarder at TSS, Jeremy was a member of the winning Head of the River crew in both 1953 (stroke) and in 1954 (third seat) when his crew broke the 1st IV record, which will always stand as it was the end of the 1st IV Head of the River era. Jeremy s love of rowing and all that the sport entails never ceased and he was present at the Shed nearly every day to coach and mentor young rowers, guide younger coaches, and do whatever was needed to keep the Shed running well. Up before dawn and often home after dark, travelling with crews to regattas and every Head of the River all in between operating his own business and being a great family man reveals so much about the passion and character of this stalwart of TSS Rowing. Mr King was also a member of the OSA Council, an Honorary Life Member of the OSA, recipient of the OSA Mervyn Collings Award, President of the P&F association in 1977 and 1978, and member of the School Council from 1989 to An amazing level of service. First and foremost however, Jeremy was a family man and our thoughts and prayers remain with his wife Lois, daughter Toni-Ann and her children, and son Geoff (Old Boy) and grandsons and current TSS students Jeremy and James. Jeremy s life was celebrated at his funeral service on Wednesday 20 October conducted by Rev Jim Stonier and assisted by The Reverend Canon Bruce Maughan, OAM. St Alban s Chapel overflowed School News with family, friends, colleagues, staff, Old Boys and rowers. It was a farewell befitting such a well-loved member of our close-knit community. After a rousing war cry and the whole Senior School forming a Guard of Honour down the Chapel Drive, Jeremy left the campus for the final time with a special detour made so that he could inspect the newly refurbished Boatshed one last time. Whilst his presence will be greatly missed at the official opening of the new Boatshed in November, Jeremy s spirit will live on there for many decades to come. Jeremy Chilcott King. A great man and larger than life character who helped guide the development of many of our young men. A man who loved his School and served it faithfully and passionately for decades. A Rare 3 GPS Cup Year 2010 has been a exceptional year for GPS competition with wins in Cricket, Rugby and, just recently, Gymnastics. (In fact the Gymnastics is a 3-peat with wins in 2008, 2009 and 2010.) Added to this the Rowers were second by only a foot and a half, the Swimmers were second by a few points and the boys achieved our best ever Football (Soccer) result of Second Place. The last time TSS won three Cups was back in 1933 and this feat has only been achieved on two other occasions 1922 and Hence the 2010 cohort can be justly proud of their efforts. Gargantuan Old Boys Weekend at TSS! My thanks to all involved in organising and conducting events for our Old Boys weekend. OSA President Mr Bruce Wright estimates well over 600 Old Boys attended at some stage commencing with the Older Old Boys Assembly on Friday, the Young Old Boys event Friday night, the Delpratt Breakfast, Headmaster s morning tea, country themed lunchtime BBQ and James Blundell concert, GPS football matches in both codes, the Decades Dinner, and finishing with the Founder s Service on Sunday morning. Many compliments were passed about the beautiful state of the grounds and buildings, and the size and appearance of the crowd of boys on Saturday. The Older Old Boys Assembly, as always, was a very moving event with men from the ages of being introduced to the boys. A highlight for many young boys was, after the boys giving the returning visitors a rousing war cry, the sixty Older Old Boys rose, limbered up and gave a wonderful war cry back to the boys, who then raised the roof with their applause. I was able to tell the boys about the legendary Pong Creek Monster who many thought was mythical. Like the Loch Ness Monster, from time to time in the 1950s, growing larger each year, the great beast raised his horrible head from time to time out of the water around dusk and sent boys scurrying from the water and grabbing sticks and rowing oars. We were extremely privileged to have the Old Boy who hunted the Monster for many months back in the 50 s present last Friday. He finally caught the Monster on a fishing line after a two hour battle. Over lunch I heard many variations of the event but the facts are the Monster turned out to be a six feet long eel. The Archbishop of the day was so impressed he had his photograph taken with the Monster and his captor the infamous TSS Old Boy, colourful local identity and raconteur Bert Cockerill. The now snowy headed Monster slayer has promised more facts will emerge at the Older Old Boys assembly in 2011! On Saturday, Old Boy and Country singer James Blundell gave a concert at lunch and then offered to sing the national Anthem at the commencement of the First XV game against Toowoomba Grammar. And what a great game it was, hard fought by both teams. With that win, and Nudgee narrowly defeating a superb State High team up in Brisbane on the same day, the GPS Rugby Premiership was shared three ways between State High, Nudgee and The Southport School. Congratulations to all players and coaches on an amazing season. This certainly capped off a great weekend Best wishes, Greg Wain Headmaster 4 T h e O l d S o u t h p o r to n i a n s A s s o c i at i o n

5 Editorial << I had pleasure of attending the OSA Race Day a couple of weeks ago and was very pleased at the great turnout of members of the OSA, parents of the school and supporters. It shows how much the OSA is valued by members of the wider community and the school community. This is one of many functions that are widely supported by parents of the school and old boys. This brings me to a subject very dear to my heart as editor of this magazine, old boy of the school and OSA council member. Is the Old Southportonians Association relevant to the needs and aspirations of The Southport School in the 21st century? How would you answer that question? Here s some grist for the mill. What if there was no OSA? How would students and their parents relate to the wonderful history that is TSS? Interesting thought, isn t it? Here s a challenge for us all more than ever, we must, as a Band of Brothers do all we can to promote the OSA, the fellowship it embodies and the long term benefits for the school community. The tragic loss of Jeremy King, a sadly missed member of the OSA and tireless volunteer and worker for the school community, brings this all home to us. How fortunate we were to have known Jeremy what an impact was made by one man. It makes you proud to be part of the OSA and the school community. Being in the Band of Brothers seems like a great idea for the future. At every opportunity, talk to your friends about the OSA and keep the faith. Your magazine is an important tool for promoting the OSA. Share it with your friends. Happy reading and enjoy the ride. Bruce Rogers McK Editor Contributions Welcome We are all interested in what you have been doing with your life, news of your travels and who you have caught up with from TSS. All contributions should be directed to: OSA Office, TSS, Winchester Street, Southport 4215 or to The OSA publishes personal notes in good faith, as a service to the school community and to the alumni. The OSA accepts no responsibility for publishing information in this section of the magazine which may be erroneous, incomplete or false. YOBS << Keeping in touch Have you lost touch with your former classmates? Do you want to get in touch with a former friend from school but don t know where they are living? Do you want to register an event that may be of interest to your former school friends? Are you looking for a particular contact of someone you knew from school to meet up professionally or socially? TSS Old Boys now have the option of keeping in touch through the introduction of their own specific online community database accessed through Since its introduction last month, there have been more than 1000 hits and the numbers are growing daily as word spreads among the alumni association. Past students can now post photos, register events, seek out other Old Boys who may be living in their area and each other on a one-to-one level through this innovative and secure database. The OSA office encourages all past students to seek out the website which has limitless potential in developing a solid networking support system for all Old Boys. Included in the community database is a bulletin board which assists in keeping Old Boys up to date with branch gatherings, alumni meetings, contact details, social functions, news alerts, reports and various school happenings. Joining this community database is completely free and all Old Boys are invited to register their contact details. For more information contact The second Young Old Boys function was held on the Friday night of this years Old Boys Weekend and turned out to be a fantastic night for all involved. The event was held at Fuel bar on Chevron Island and we had over 150 old boys and partners turn up. It was great to see a huge group of young old boys eager to catch up with mates and to keep a connection to the school and its community, but was also great to see a large number of 20 and 30 year reunion old boys there to have a few drinks and swap stories with the younger fellas. We hope that this event continues to grow and develops into a great night where all old boys can enjoy catching up over a few beers before the main Saturday old boy celebrations. 5

6 OSA Reunion Weekend Philip Lever (Del 66-70), Neil Thomas (Del 67-70), Gary Smith (Del 67-70), John Williamson (Del 50-53) AM and Nicki Williamson at the Delpratt Breakfast. >> This year s annual OSA Reunion Weekend again attracted a strong crowd of supporters, many of whom are country residents who delight in the opportunity to revisit their old school. While capturing a more formal tone than other events held over the Old Boys Weekend, the annual Older Old Boys assembly was no less a celebration of former school days at Southport. Nearly 50 former students who attended TSS 60 years ago or more, returned to the school to share their memories with the current senior school cohort. Speaking on behalf of the Old Boys, the oldest Old Boy Jim Crombie shared his thoughts and recollections with the student body as part of the assembly. Mr Crombie was a boarder in Thorold House from 1926 until A rousing war cry certainly cemented the bond between past and present Southportonians. Following the assembly, the reminiscences continued in the Dining Hall, as the Old Boys enjoyed lunch with many comments focussed on the many changes within the school grounds since their day. Once again the TSS Foundation/OSA McWhirter Cup golf day was a huge success and a great way to kick off Old Boys Weekend. Held at RACV Royal Pines, this popular event attracted a big roll-up of golfers including Old Boys, current parents and friends of the wider TSS community. Bruce Lynton BMW again was the major sponsor of the day giving away four stylish BMW golf bags, golf packs and other goodies. Other sponsors of the Texas scramble-style competition included George Laurens, the MBA Partnership, ABKJ Lawyers, the Alliance Group, Xerox, Oz Lending, Gold Coast Blaze and Dynamic Print Communications. The Old Boys team of John Elks, Ian Elks, Murray Elks and Jim Twentyman won both the McWhirter Cup (only open to Old Boys of the School) as well as the overall competition. Another weekend highlight was the Dellie breakfast which, this year, included two notable events. The first was giving former Delpratt House boarders a chance to see the massive $500,000 refurbishment which was completed earlier this year with the second being the unveiling of the McDonald Family Trophy in honor of one of the House s first boarders, the late Sidney Cotton OBE. A large number of former Delpratt boarders and their families attended the hot buffet breakfast on the lawns in front of the House which was enjoyed under perfect, sunny winter skies. While this event forms part of the reunion weekend activities, it is hosted by the current Delpratt Housemaster, Phil Ward, and his wife, Jan, specifically for current and past students and family of the House so there are always plenty of stories told around the tables and great camaraderie is enjoyed by all. 6 T h e O l d S o u t h p o r to n i a n s A s s o c i at i o n

7 Second generation Ben (Wal 95-06), Greg (Wal 72-77) and Jacob Rix (Wal 98-00), at the Generations Dinner Representing generations of Old Boys with our current students were John Austin (Tho 50-51) and Year 1 student Bailey Bennett (Mitre 09). Tom Pickett (Rad 81-90) and Beric Lynton (Rad 78-90) head off at the TSS Foundation/OSA McWhirter Cup golf day On the Saturday afternoon, one of TSS own sons, James Blundell, and a shared win in the GPS Rugby Premiership helped set the scene for one of the most successful reunion weekends in the School s history this year. The ever-popular boatshed barbecue enjoyed a bush theme this year and was very much a family-fun affair. The bush theme was in support of the many past students who live in rural Queensland and New South Wales and also in recognition of the Queensland Country Life s 75th birthday celebrations. Close to 400 attended the bush-themed spit roast barbecue at the Boatshed ovals while James Blundell provided several live music segments, sometimes accompanied by former Australian Idol contestant Jesse Curran, and James father, Peter Blundell senior, who joined in singing some ballads and reciting his own bush poetry. For the youngsters, there was an animal farm with miniature pony rides and lots of farm animals to pat as well as a display of Charolais cattle by the TSS Cattle Team. The mechanical bull ride ensured many spills were enjoyed by those who dared take on the beast. In keeping with the bush theme, Dover and Sons of Boonah, brought a selection of farm machinery down with the all-terrain Polaris being a popular hit. OSA President, Bruce Wright, said the reunion weekend had been a huge success and he was delighted that so many past students had supported the new direction of introducing the bush theme for the barbecue. TSS has enjoyed a long association with rural Australia since the School was first founded with boarding facilities provided for country students so they could receive a quality education at Southport, said Bruce Today, TSS still embraces rural Australia and we have many families whose sons have attended the School over several generations. One such example is the Blundell family who are fourth generation at TSS and to have James and his father Peter present at our barbecue this year was extremely special. Following the barbecue, everyone crossed Dixon Drive to watch the final Rugby game of the season against Toowoomba Grammar School. In the game, TSS scored a win which resulted in a three-way shared premiership win with Nudgee College and Brisbane State High School. An estimated crowd in excess of 2,000 TSS and Toowoomba supporters turned up for this rousing final game of the season. Another traditional event which recognises the strong support from Old Boys at the school is the annual Generations Dinner hosted by the Headmaster. Among the many third and fourth generation families to attend the evening were the Bell family of Emerald (fourth generation) and the Perrin, Lethbridge and Postle families (third generation). The School recognises the importance of the generational links many families have with TSS and dinners such as this further cement these strong relationships. 7

8 OSA reunion Weekend James Blundell (Tho 77-81), Peter Blundell Snr (Tho 49-53) and Jesse Curran at the Bush Barbecue Greg Rigby (Atk 1990), Robert Dabscheck (Mau ) and Shaun Barry (Kai ) Robert Beattle (McK 96-00), Tony Dare (Mau 96-00) and Mark Ensor (Kai 92-00) Don (McK 57-60) and Helen Melrose.at the Reunion Dinner Bruce Enderlin (Rad 75-80), Chris Bauman (Mel 74-80) and John Cobon (Tho 76-80) Angus Ramsay (Rad 89-99), David Pointon (Rad 88-00), Gareth Wockner (Kai 92-00), Vincent Ng (Tur 97-00), Nepolian Rema (Del 98-00) (from PNG), Josh King (Del 99-00), Floyd Tembon and Reane Reme. 8 T h e O l d S o u t h p o r to n i a n s A s s o c i at i o n

9 OSA reunion weekend Catching up over lunch were Edward (Pat) Hunt (Del 43-46), Alan Radcliffe DFC (Tho 35-39) and Tom Eady (Del 44-48) at the Older Old Boys Assembly Lionel Meerkin (Prep 42-47), Garth Davidson (Del 48-58) Jeremy King (Del 50-54) and Archie Douglas (Tho 56-61) at the Bush Barbecue Stuart Payne (Del 86-90), David Wolbers (Tur 82-90), Robert Dabscheck (Mau 86-90) and Jeffrey McNiven (Atk 86-90) at the Reunion Dinner 9

10 The drought breaks for the Frasers When red turns to green >> After what has been described as the driest years since Federation, the parched red dustbowl of Queensland s outback has been transformed into a lush green landscape that, even today, takes away the breath of those living there. Scott and Paula Fraser of Nooyeah Downs outside Thargomindah have seen this transformation on rare occasions in past years but for their two children, David and Georgie, it was an almost incomprehensible sight. The former second generation TSS and St Hilda s students are both at university in Brisbane studying for respective degrees in marketing and communications. Georgie was at home and David was still in Brisbane when the heavens opened on our 89,000ha family property located in an area of Queensland known as heartbreak corner, said father Scott, an Old Boy and former member of The Southport School Council. While David and Georgie were born during some of region s wettest years in 1989 and 1990, all they had ever known growing up at Nooyeah was a scene of cracked earth, dust storms, no grass to feed livestock and just a few occasional showers. Seeing the transformation of the countryside from red to green literally left them speechless and, even today, we drive around with huge smiles on our faces and wonder at the amazing change which has taken place in the countryside. The transformation of this landscape began 12 months ago almost to the day when the heavens opened (and have continued to do so ever since) to break what is possibly the worst drought in the area s history. For three months the road into Nooyeah was cut off by floodwaters of the Bulloo River and when it came time to drive out so that David and Georgie could return to university, the grass that had sprung up was a high as the 4-wheel drive. On the old scale we have had 22 inches of rain during the past 12 months in an area that usually enjoys a reasonable season on 10 inches of rain. That certainly was an extreme compared to 2009 when we had just two inches (or 57mm) and only slightly more in the preceding years. The Frasers eventually managed to be one of the first cars to get out after the floods at the time and even today, it is impossible to see the stony ridges from the air due to the lush paddocks of grass, said Scott. The Frasers are fourth generation graziers in the area and their knowledge of the land and how to manage it efficiently during good and bad times is extensive with Scott electing to deliberately start destocking the property in March 2009 and completing the process in September the same year. When the rains began in November and December we had no stock so we were not exposed to losing livestock in the floodwaters. We only started restocking from scratch in April this year. In the 50 years, Scott has been living on the family property, he can only remember a couple of occasions when the countryside sprung into life but they are periods which the entire family cherish. The memories of dust storms blowing in from the Simpson Desert quickly disappear (along with cleaning up after one of those dust storms!). To survive the flooding rivers, creeks and road, Scott, who flies his own plane, said he had stocked up on essential food items just before the big wet set in. He said he had been unable to fly over the property or use his airstrip for quite a long time so the plane sat in its hanger waiting for the ground dry out enough to take off and land. Only recently I flew over the property and was still amazed at its beauty and ability to rejuvenate itself once the seasons change. We have been fortunate that the river (Bulloo) really hasn t stopped running for almost 12 months and the countryside breathes with an abundance of birdlife. In awe of nature s beauty, Scott said the family recently drove to Lake Eyre to have a paddle in Australia s amazing inland sea that is usually a dusty dry claypan that stretches for as far as the eye can see. Paula Fraser, Ernie Dingo, Georgie and David Fraser preparing to leave Nooyeah after three months. With new life now returning to Nooyeah, Scott said he was now preparing to begin lamb-marking his steadily growing herd of Dorper sheep. Before the drought, the property carried approximately 3,500 sheep and 2,000 Santa Gertrudis and Angus cross cattle. The process of starting from scratch doesn t daunt Scott and Paula who adopt a gentle respect for the land and all that it has to offer. In fact, Scott was one of the driving forces behind establishing OBE Organic Beef System which is accredited under the National Association for Sustainable Agriculture Australia (NASAA) and Australian Certified Organic (ACO). NASAA organic certification is a total quality management system developed for organic production and allows the operator, who is inspected and approved by NASAA, to advertise and label their produce/products as meeting the NASAA standards. As a founding member of OBE, Scott is one of 32 shareholders based in the Channel Country whose goal is to establish awareness of the prized quality of beef from the region. The first export of beef was three years ago to Japan and, since then, OBE has developed markets in Asia, North America and within Australia. The next step for the organisation is to establish a similar market for lamb bred in the same region. 10 T h e O l d S o u t h p o r to n i a n s A s s o c i at i o n

11 >> Rain from Nowhere by Murray Hartin His cattle didn t get a bid, they were fairly bloody poor, What was he going to do? He couldn t feed them anymore, The dams were all but dry, hay was thirteen bucks a bale, Last month s talk of rain was just a fairytale, His credit had run out, no chance to pay what s owed, Bad thoughts ran through his head as he drove down Gully Road. You have to talk to someone, and yes I know I rarely did But you have to think about Fiona and think about the kids. I m worried about you son, you haven t rung for quite a while, I know the road you re on cause I ve walked every bloody mile. The date? December 7 back in 1983, Behind the shed I had the shotgun rested in the brigalow tree. Geez, great grandad bought the place back in 1898, Now I m such a useless bastard, I ll have to shut the gate. Can t support my wife and kids, not like dad and those before, Crikey, Grandma kept it going while Pop fought in the war. With depression now his master, he abandoned what was right, There s no place in life for failures, he d end it all tonight. See, I d borrowed way too much to buy the Johnson place Then it didn t rain for years and we got bombed by interest rates, The bank was at the door, I didn t think I had a choice, I began to squeeze the trigger that s when I heard your voice. You said Where are you Daddy? It s time to play our game I ve got Squatter all set up, we might get General Rain. There were still some things to do, he d have to shoot the cattle first, Of all the jobs he d ever done, that would be the worst. He d have a shower, watch the news, then they d all sit down for tea Read his kids a bedtime story, watch some more TV, Kiss his wife goodnight, say he was off to shoot some roos Then in a paddock far away he d blow away the blues. But he drove in the gate and stopped as he always had To check the roadside mailbox and found a letter from his Dad. Now his dad was not a writer, Mum did all the cards and mail But he knew the writing from the notebooks that he d kept from cattle sales, He sensed the nature of its contents, felt moisture in his eyes, Just the fact his dad had written was enough to make him cry. Son, I know it s bloody tough, it s a cruel and twisted game, This life upon the land when you re screaming out for rain, There s no candle in the darkness, not a single speck of light But don t let the demon get you, you have to do what s right, I don t know what s in your head but push the bad thoughts well away See, you ll always have your family at the back end of the day It really was that close, you re the one that stopped me son, And you re the one that taught me there s no answer in a gun. Just remember people love you, good friends won t let you down. Look, you might have to swallow pride and take that job in town, Just til things come good, son, you ve always got a choice And when you get this letter ring me, cause I d love to hear your voice. Well he cried and laughed and shook his head then put the truck in gear, Shut his eyes and hugged his dad in a vision that was clear, Dropped the cattle at the yards, put the truck away Filled the troughs the best he could and fed his last ten bales of hay. Then he strode towards the homestead, shoulders back and head held high, He still knew the road was tough but there was purpose in his eye. He called his wife and children, who d lived through all his pain, Hugs said more than words he d come back to them again, They talked of silver linings, how good times always follow bad, Then he walked towards the phone, picked it up and rang his Dad. And while the kids set up the Squatter, he hugged his wife again, Then they heard the roll of thunder and they smelt the smell of rain. Refer to Murray s website for information on his book and CD s YOUR OSA OLD BOY NUMBERS PLEASE KEEP YOUR ADDRESSES UPDATED Overseas Old Boys Top Ten by Country United Kingdom 115 Hong Kong 96 Papua New Guinea 85 United State of America 72 New Zealand 57 Taiwan (ROC) 54 Korea (South) 45 Canada 39 Germany 34 Thailand 33 All Old Boys Deceased 2113 Address Unknown 5185 Australia 6880 Overseas 896 Total QLD 5763 NSW 763 VIC 171 WA 60 ACT 45 NT 32 SA 27 TAS 19 Total 6880 Editor: You will see we are still missing over 5,000 Old Boys contact details from the OSA membership roll. Please check with your mates to see if they are receiving this magazine and encourage them to update their details via the website or by contacting the OSA office either or phone

12 Bec Andrews, Mark Poestra and Fiona Grifith OSA races in for fun day >> In addition to the traditional Old Boys reunion weekend, the OSA hosts a number of events both on the Gold Coast and its Branch network throughout Australia and Internationally. This year has seen the launch of a new event added to the association s popular social calendar. The OSA Race Day was held on Saturday 2nd October at the Gold Coast Turf Club and attracted many Old Boys alongside TSS families and friends travelling to support the day from the Coast and further afield. We thought we would add something a little different to the mix, said OSA President Bruce Wright. The Young Old Boys held a regular race day over a decade ago with great success and launching this stand-alone event appeals to all ages. The sponsorship generated via naming rights of races and corporate tables offers us the ability to raise much needed funds for the OSA to support Old Boys and our programs, while everyone had a great day enjoying the taste of full corporate hospitality, linked to the Spring Carnival which created an exciting atmosphere. Alex Wheeler, Andrea Backhaus, with Brie and Nathan Quartermaine (McK 96-99) Colin Kitto (McK 77-84) with Katrina and Troy Kassulke As all proceeds will assist OSA projects including bursaries, Hidden Creek Outdoor Education Centre and related pastoral programs, this event is destined to be a major annual attraction for everyone on the TSS social calendar. Anyone interested in supporting the OSA and its Race Day 2011 event should please contact the OSA office on Mark Peterson, Charmayne Partridge and Shaun Lyall Jeff Trotter, Riki Vitico and Peter Manolis 12 T h e O l d S o u t h p o r to n i a n s A s s o c i at i o n

13 Branches News >> Rockhampton Perth Rockhampton Branch held their 77th Annual Reunion Luncheon at the magnificent venue of The Waterline, Keppel Bay Marina, Rosslyn Bay. Headmaster Greg Wain and OSA President Bruce Wright attended the gathering of over 20 Old Boys and Partners. Older Old Boys, John Purcell (McK 49-54), Burnett Lawless (McK 46-49), Phil Hughes (Del 43-44) and Phillip Aboud (Del 50-52) were presented with the Older Old Boys commemorative tie by Headmaster Greg Wain. Special thanks must go to John Compton and John Rodgers for organising this very successful gathering. Perth Branch President, Simon Conran organised a small, but very happy group of Old Boys to gathering at the Generous Squire on Friday 20 August A surprise visit by Rev Jim Stonier and his daughter Susan was very welcome. Wide Bay London Wide Bay Branch Function Peppers Pier Resort, Hervey Bay 4th September, 2010 It is so pleasing to meet people who, even though they haven t seen or even been back to the School for a long time, still are very proud Southportonians. On Saturday 4th September, Doug Chandler (Del 88-92) organised a casual and informal Wide Bay function at the Peppers Resort restaurant. Stewart Tan (Del 86-89), Paul Cronin (Kai 83-92), Sam Douglas (Tho 83-91), David Serafini (Mel 88-98) and Brodie Cunningham (Tho 02-07) met for a casual gathering at Ye Olde Cheshire Cheese in London on Wednesday 13 October Cairns Peter Hyland (Tho 52 55) & his wife Jan were the first to arrive, and some wonderful stories appeared from the past. Doug (Del 48-52) & Jill McIver also attended. Justin (Kai 78-81) & Aliona Kidd, Waverley Cameron (Del 65-69), and Carlene Browne (Parent of Mackenzie Wal Yr8) also attended. Branch President, Tony McInnes (McK 80-86), organised a gathering of Old Boys attended by President Bruce Wright who presented Older Old Boys, Terrey Francis (Del 48-54), Brian Jones (Del 46-49), Kevin Colin (JS 47-50), James Nimmo (McK 39-40) with a commemorative tie. Bruce also took the time to visit our oldest Old Boy John Warner (MCK ) and presented him personally with his tie. 13

14 Calender 2011 Branch Gatherings Lockyer Valley Mulgowie Muster Sunday 10 April South Australia Adelaide Saturday 7 May Western Australian Perth January 14, April 15 & June 24 Wide Bay & Burnett Hervey Bay Saturday 27 August Far North Queensland Cairns Friday 02 September London Mid October dates to be confirmed Northern Rivers Ballina Saturday 10 December Reunion Weekend Older Old Boys Assembly Friday 29 July Foundation/OSA Annual Golf Day Friday 29 July Young Old Boys Gathering (PM) Friday 29 July Delpratt Breakfast Saturday 30 July Headmaster s Morning Tea Saturday 30 July School Tour Saturday 30 July Reunion BBQ Saturday 30 July Rugby Final GPS round Saturday 30 July Reunion Dinner 2001 year Official reunion (+ 1941, 51, 61, 71, 81, 91) Saturday 30 July Sport Cricket Old Boys Match v 1st XI Saturday 29 & Sunday 30 January Rowing Dinner 1st VIII Crews Saturday 5 March OSA Council Meetings All meetings held in the New Founder s Room, Delpratt Building commencing at 6pm Monday 7 February Monday 18 April Monday 6 June Monday 17 October AGM Monday 28 November Chapel Service Sunday 31 July Looking to get away? Hidden Creek is your next care free destination. Suitable for families, conferences and outdoor adventures. Your choice of cabin or tent accommodation. Catered or BYO Contact Clinton Cronk T h e O l d S o u t h p o r to n i a n s A s s o c i at i o n

15 >> Outback tour A 4,000 kilometre bush tour taking in rural northern New South Wales and southern and central western Queensland has further cemented relationships between TSS and its country communities. The tour followed earlier similar tours by the school s Founder, Horace Henry Dixon, who used to travel to rural communities and promote the values of a TSS education. Travellers reflections Following the footsteps of the Founder who undertook a similar tour almost 80 years ago, President of the Old Southportonians Association Bruce Wright, and Boarding Housemaster and Old Boy Ian Browne and I, headed bush in August to visit as many rural townships as possible in a 4,000km tour of northern New South Wales and Queensland. The tour started at Armidale then Gunnedah for AgQuip before meandering our way across the border to conduct functions at Dirranbandi, Cunnamulla, Charleville, Longreach, Barcaldine, Emerald, Roma and Chinchilla. The aims of the trip were to symbolically reinforce our connections and commitment to the bush, visit country families on their turf, reconnect with Old Boys in the bush and tell prospective families about the advantages of a TSS education. My thanks to Bruce and Ian for their time and efforts over a very busy six days. Thank you also to all who joined us at the various functions. Greg Wain This year, Headmaster Greg Wain, OSA President Bruce Wright and Rogers Junior Boarding House Master and Old Boy Ian Browne travelled along a similar route albeit in more comfort than their predecessor! The tour started at Armidale in New South Wales and meandered its way to the AgQuip farm show at Gunnedah where TSS joined with other schools in promoting the School. Next leg of the journey was to Walgett then onto Lightning Ridge where the tour party met with a local TSS family and had an opportunity to go underground to see the real workings of a major opal mine. TSS Founder, Horace Henry Dixon, wasn t fazed by dirt roads and a wild terrain when he undertook his numerous outback tours in the 1920s and 1930s. Photo TSS Archives. Next leg of the tour was a stop at Walgett before crossing the boarder to Dirranbandi, Cunnamulla, Charleville, Longreach, Barcaldine, Emerald, Roma and Chinchilla. We were delighted to be able to catch members of the wider TSS community at our functions and be able to reaffirm the school s long-established connections with rural Queensland, said Greg. Since its earliest days of foundation in 1901, TSS has always served the bush as a premier boarding school for boys from the country and, today, many rural families now enjoy third and fourth generation links with the school such as the Bell family which is among the School s many fourth generation families. Boarding remains a key driver of the spirit of the School as we recognise the importance of providing a secure and caring environment in which country boarders can benefit from the wide range of co-curricular activities on offer at TSS and also enjoy new or totally refurbished boarding accommodation. Ian Browne, Bruce Wright and Headmaster Greg Wain preparing to follow the Founder s footsteps. We recently spent $500,000 in restoring one of our five boarding Houses (Delpratt) following consultation with the boarders themselves who chose to see their home away from home refurbished to the grandeur of when it was built in 1925 by the Founder rather than have a brand new boarding House built. This revealed to us the intense depth of feeling boarding students have for the school and their recognition and great love for the traditional values of TSS and its stately buildings. Following the footsteps of the founder in recapturing the spirit of the bush, the 4,000km tour also enabled the TSS Headmaster, to present rural communities with information on the latest brain research into the way boys learn and how this is being applied within the TSS curriculum. The following pages show a breakdown of the tour with photographs at the various townships visited. Feedback from parents, Old Boys and the wider rural community had been positive, said OSA president, Bruce Wright, and it is envisaged that TSS will undertake a similar tour next year visiting additional rural communities along the way. 15

16 Spirit of the bush Armidale Day 1 After a 500kms drive from the Gold Coast to Armidale with the Following Footsteps of the Founder emblazoned on their, OSA President Bruce Wright and Rogers Housemaster Ian Browne met informally with seven Old Boys, three prospective parents and one Older Old Boy, John Magnussen, who was presented with a commemorative tie. Among the younger Old Boys to catch up with the touring party was former School Captain Brodie Cunningham (2007) and, as Bruce Wright pointed out: Re-connecting with these Old Boys gave up an opportunity to discuss what is currently happening at the School as most of them had not been able to return to TSS since leaving. They loved hearing about the School s progress, current sporting achievements and asked how boarding community was going, said Bruce. For the Headmaster, Ian Browne (Old Boy and Junior Boarding Master) and myself it was a very beneficial trip that I believe will be the basis for many more in the future, where the School will develop programs to grow the relationship it always has enjoyed with the bush and country families. I again sincerely thank all those amazing supporters of TSS and the OSA who attended the events covering almost 5,000 kilometres starting at Armidale, Gunnedah, Cunnamulla, Charleville, Longreach, Barcaldine, Emerald, Roma and Chinchilla before returning to Southport. In following the Founder s footsteps, H.H. Dixon would travel for weeks at a time visiting families on their properties to discuss the advantages of a boarding school education and I am sure in re-establishing these roots, the School s commitment to country boarding is as strong as I can ever remember it. The OSA has also reaffirmed this position to encompass a strategy to work with the School to strengthen the number of Old Boys sending their sons back to TSS from the current figure of 8 per cent to 15 per cent over the next five years. This compares to current levels at ACGS of 17 per cent and Shore (Sydney) 23 per cent. For any Old Boy, the Generations that pass through TSS are so important on so many levels and I encourage any family to find out more through the OSA Office or Admissions. Bruce Wright Tamworth, Gunnedah AgQuip, Walgett Day 2 TSS Headmaster Greg Wain joined the tour group for another 600km drive which took in the Gunnedah AgQuip agricultural show where Biddle Housemaster, Graham Swinton, was manning the School s expo stand. TSS hosted a small gathering of parents and Old Boys at AgQuip including parents Rob and Awan Eveleigh, Richard Gilmour and Craig Steer. The show also provided an excellent opportunity to catch up with Old Boys Richard Nicholls from JBS Swift Feedlot near Caroona and Charles Brett and wife, Fi, parents of three boarders at TSS with Mark currently in his final year and McKinley House Captain. After several hours it was on the road again for a four-hour drive to Walgett, enjoying a beautiful dusk sunset on the way. 16 T h e O l d S o u t h p o r to n i a n s A s s o c i at i o n

17 Lightning Ridge, Dirranbandi, Cunnamulla Day 3 Despite the day s 600km drive, the group found time to make a special stop at Lightning Ridge to meet with Rebecca Taylor, mother of Year 8 boarding student, Logan. Rebecca gave them a fascinating tour underground of an operational opal mine and a history of this famous Australian mining town. Next stop was lunch at Dirranbandi with a group of Old Boys and prospective parents, all of whom were keen to heard about the refurbishment of Delpratt Boarding House, changes to assist boarders with additional free tutoring in Maths, English and the Sciences and the strong working relationship between TSS and the School s alumni. Of special interest was the 2009 Graduation Year DVD shown to the group and the many wonderful memorials that were ignited. Following a typical bush road, the group then drove to Cunnamulla which also has been a strong base for TSS boarding. A function was held at the Cunnamulla Hotel with many Old Boys and parents driving long distances to catch up on all the news from TSS. Charleville, Tambo, Longreach Day 4 This was the longest drive for the group, as they meandered their way from Cunnamulla, past Wyandra to Charleville for brunch at Hotel Corones with current and past parents and Old Boys. All were keen to know more about TSS and what the School can offer in boarding for their sons. Carmel and Bill Whatmore of Boatman, (parents of Justin who is boarding in Year 8) were among those who attended the Charleville brunch. We are delighted to see how well Justin has settled into boarding school life having only previously experienced Distance Education, said Carmel. It has been a huge adjustment coming from property and being schooled via Distance Education, to join TSS and being able to play in numerous team sports including Cricket and Rugby, but he is thoroughly enjoying himself. From there it was on to Tambo and then Longreach, the home of QANTAS and the Stockman s Hall of Fame, where the group gathered at the Longreach Club to meet many of our TSS generation families including the Gowings and Peter Johnstone whose son, Robert Johnstone was third generation at TSS. Also attending the Longreach function were John Tubs MacMillan with his family and many current and past parents including Rolly and Jenny Deane and Vivette and Mark White who were delighted to meet with TSS representatives on their home turf. The Headmaster reiterated his emphasis on reconnecting with the bush parents, students and Old Boys at Longreach and the importance of maintaining contact with all three groups within the wider TSS community. To complete the evening, the touring party enjoyed a wonderful dining experience in one of the West s best-kept secrets, the Eagle s Nest Café (be assured, the best steakhouse in Longreach). Hawkie was a wonderful and gracious host and, as it turned out, best friends with many members of the TSS community including Stephen Gray and Peter Bromley. It was a lovely night after such a long road trip. Spirit of the bush 17

18 Spirit of the bush Longreach, Barcaldine, Emerald Day 5 The group s next stop was for a casual lunch at Hillalong, the home estate of one of TSS most-passionate Old Boys, Bill Chandler and his wife, Julann. Among the invited guests were Old Boys, Will Chandler, Douglas Rodgers, John Miller and Stew Campbell. Bill and Julann Chandler hosted a lunch on the lawns of their home and, afterwards, showed the group their outback tropical oasis a magnificent garden with mango, olive, citrus and paw paw trees. Next stop was Emerald, a three-hour trip taking in mixed landscapes of farmland flats near Barcaldine, the mining area of Alpha and then over the Great Dividing Range. With Emerald not being a traditional base for the OSA, or TSS in general, the group was delighted to meet with past students and current parents at the organised function in town. Guests included the Staines family, David and Robert and their father Doug, who was presented with a commemorative Older Old Boys tied by OSA president, Bruce Wright, in recognition of his time at TSS more than 60 years ago. Old Boy and current parent, Tony Bell and his wife Vicki also attended the function. Emerald, Roma, Chinchilla Day 6 This 600km was the last leg of the outback tour, passing through the scenic area of Carnarvon and its beautiful mountain ranges and arriving at Roma for the largest function of the tour. More than 30 TSS and St Hilda s families attended the combined function including Charlie and Liz Frith, John Hays and Jono and Louise Milroy, Nick and Sarah Cameron, Jenny and Adrian Bucknell, Warwick Cooper and wife Sophie with baby daughter Madeleine, and Margot and David Scott. The final function of the tour was held in Chinchilla attended by Bryant and Susan Ussher, Robert Hays, Matthew Parkinson, Jamie Kemshead, Robert Bridle and David and Sonya Greenup. Every step of the way, the TSS tour group was welcomed warmly into the rural communities and it quickly became obvious that the concept of Following the Footsteps of the Founder is a unique way for TSS to maintain its strong ties with country Australia while capturing the true spirit of the bush. 18 T h e O l d S o u t h p o r to n i a n s A s s o c i at i o n

19 Old Boys Rowing News >> Four former oarsmen from The Southport School are currently coaching girls from St Margarets Anglican Girls School in Brisbane. Other Old Boys in the photograph include Bob Alexander (Del ) who has, for years, been involved in Queensland Rowing administration and has also been involved in coaching young rowers both boys and girls for many years. Bob is Age Group Coordinator of Grade 8 girls. Tony Elliot (McK ) is 1st VIII coach who has been coaching rowing at the School for over 20 years and is regarded very highly in girls rowing having won numerous Head of the Rivers in the BSRA Competition. Mark Newcomb (Tho ) and Dino Castellano (McK ) are currently co-coaching the St Margaret s 2nd VIII. Both Mark and Dino have coached many successful underage crews for the School. Duncan Free Atkinson Olympic gold medal rower will also be racing in the handicapped division with a team from The Southport School. He will be rowing with the TSS men s eight and men s fours along with three Olympians and five ex-kings Cup oarsman. While the crew will be handicapped because of their age and prowess, it is reported that they will still be hard to beat! L R: Tony Elliot (McK ), Dino Castellano (McK ), Bob Alexander (Del ), Mark Newcomb (Tho ) New look for Boat Shed >> The wishes of many Old Boys have come to fruition with an almost brand new Boat Shed opening for the start of the rowing and sailing season. Backed by support from current parents and the School, a number of Old Boys threw their support behind renovation and extension to the existing Boat Shed and, as work continued during winter months, so did additional support flow in from those who have many fond memories of life on the Nerang River. Among the driving forces for a metamorphosis to the existing Boat Shed was Old Boy Garth Davidson of Fort Knox Storage who, together with Gordon Douglas, the Hillier family, a number of local businesses and current parents and supporters, had a vision to see the facility upgraded to meet the needs of modern competition. Mark Davidson said support for the project has resulted almost in a total revamp of the facility. Many Old Boys retain a strong attachment with the Boat Shed and, it was a poignant moment in November when Lois King, widow of popular Mr TSS Rowing Jeremy King, was invited to officially open the facility. Jeremy was always involved with the shed and witnessed every stage of the renovations and extensions almost to completion, said close friend Garth. Renovations and extensions to the Boat Shed have included a new pontoon, new male and female toilet/amenities block, new roof and insulation, extension to the kitchen with dual servery to the north and south side of the shed, fully self-contained and secure repair facility, new cardio-room to house ergometers and spin bikes, new state-of-the-art engineered racking system, new tiled flooring and tiled covered riverside verandah, additional storage, turfed areas and a totally new covered shed opposite the existing shed to accommodate the school s fleet of power boats. Adding further support to the new-look shed is the continued sponsorship of rowing by Old Boy Beric Lynton whose BMW franchise at Southport and provided rowers with many essential items. 19

20 Reflections Hosted by Bert Cockerill >> Memories of TSS dedicated to all those crazy boys who created history and mystery and made school a better place and to those teachers who really did know what we were up to. We are still looking for short stories about pranks that almost got you Six of the Best but please keep them down to under 250 words. Here s some from Peter Skinner: Invariably any memories of TSS revolve around several principal themes such as the food, corporal punishment, swimming the river, the perceived hardships of boarding school life, breaking the rules and not getting caught, breaking the rules and getting caught, favourite teachers, less favoured teachers, sports triumphs and losses and a few other subjects that are best kept off the printed page. Also invariably, however, discussions among TSS Old Boys on the aforementioned topics focus on the humorous side of things rather than the emotional or physical highs or lows of the moment in my case, back in the 1950s and 60s. Probably, time has lessened the negative aspects or has highlighted the more memorable hilarious events so we can laugh even more uproariously about most of them. Like fine wine, many anecdotes get better with age and in being re-told. world well-rounded young gentlemen who would go on to make meaningful contributions to industry, commerce, and society in general, students at TSS occasionally lost sight of the establishment s mission and life at boarding school often verged on training for jungle warfare. Not that that was a bad thing, as the SAS might have been the beneficiary. However, getting caught in such activities was a serious risk and potential punishment ranged from being caned, gated, or even expelled. That risk undoubtedly made those escapades more appealing. Our parents would not have been happy about some activities but did give tacit approval to others. Hey, they were kids once too! Such things as night raids on the kitchen to pinch fresh bread, eggs, or milk were considered reasonable; swimming the Nerang River under the cover of pre-dawn darkness for an early surf at Narrowneck or Surfers Paradise was a popular escapade and to my knowledge none of us ever had any serious problems although one novice swimmer (a fine sportsman in many other aspects) en route to Narrowneck did get pushed under by the weight of a sodden beach towel and had to be rescued. Given the wilderness aspects of the Nerang River and McIntosh Island at that time, there s little doubt sharks cruised the river; stingrays and dolphins were often sighted, so it s something of a miracle that no TSS river swimmer was ever mauled or seriously injured. I do, however, remember getting stung by some unknown bitey on entering the water near The Spit to swim across to Budd s Beach via McIntosh Island. Within seconds I had shooting pains up my leg, the gland in my groin swelled and I could barely walk. I forget all the members of the group but do know that the Douglas twins, Angus and Gordon, were with me for a short time. They had access to surfboards in the Surfers Paradise Surf Club they were experienced and excellent board riders; the rest of us were eager to learn. My predicament almost certainly curtailed my involvement but telling my good mates that I was in agony elicited scant sympathy. Bad luck Pete, We ll tell you how good the surf was. And they splashed off into the dark, leaving me to my immediate painful future. (None of that US Marines-style loyalty i.e. Leave no marine behind. ). I simply sat and waited. Within about 15 minutes the swelling abated, and the worst of the pain was gone. It was still dark so I figured if I swam reasonably fast I could still get in a morning surf. Swimming the Nerang River alone in the dark was not much fun but I had no logical alternative. What? Go back to bed nah! When I finally swam out for a body surf at Surfers all the boards were taken I was greeted with a very comforting, So you didn t die after all. It was really good a little while ago, pity you missed it. That s the great thing about good mates they re always understanding and sympathetic! If you have some stories you would like to share, contact Bert Cockerill through the OSA office. Palma Argentea There s an adage in certain schools of journalism that one should never let the facts interfere with a good story but that s not my intent but be warned, it could happen. So, it is with humour in mind that I ll pen these few anecdotes and trust the reader, keeping in mind that I m dredging my memory, will forgive any factual errors. Night raids and other commando training exercises While the main goal of boarding school was to educate and graduate into the Following 25 years service or more to the School, the latest members to join Palma Argentea and offered honorary membership to the OSA were (back) Steve Roberts, Greg Norman, Bruce Curtis, Bruce Davidson, David Goll, John Wallace, Don Ross, Mike Halpin, Stewart Eglington and (seated) Dorothy Coolwell, Lurline Loffel, Lyn Green and Eleanor Mackie photographed with Headmaster Greg Wain (seated centre). Absent: The Rev. Canon Bruce Maughan OAM. 20 T h e O l d S o u t h p o r to n i a n s A s s o c i at i o n

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