Thursday, July 28, 2016

b.1 From the Private Collection of Ethel Herron The Bracken Ridge Progress Association Journal July 1968

The Bracken Ridge Progress Association was instrumental in different activities and the development of the suburb in its early days.  This booklet was an unexpected find, located in some of our mother's papers.  She, like many of her era, kept all sorts of interesting bits and pieces.  To us, they were unimportant, that is until we came to realise that others would find them quite valuable.  

This is a transcription of the July 1969 edition.  It highlights a visit by Lord Mayor Clem Jones, who planted trees near the school.  A plaque was embedded in the footpath, it appears to not have survived the 50 years since the event.  More history removed, forgotten, and all only distant memories of those of us who are now the "old timers".

Reflections by Reg. Slaughter brought a smile to my face, as his vivid word picture of the views to the Glasshouse Mountains, and the Sunshine Coast Railway, from the higher blocks around the suburb, is exactly what we saw from the top of our acreage!

Reflections by Reg. Slaughter                  written for the Bracken Ridge Journal  July 1968 Page 2

It is with fond memories that I direct my thoughts to the very early days of Bracken Ridge in the year 1896.  As local lads of Sandgate, Edwin Neckenberg, Jack Bevington (son of a Sandgate school teacher) and myself with a pea rifle, a cage to trap birds and enough energy stored up to cope with a long busk walk; used to make our way out to the Ridge.

After leaving the Deagon Racecourse we soon found ourselves in thick timbered country.  We followed cattle tracks until eventually we reached Mr and Mrs Macpherson's homestead.  The view from their front verandah presented a perfect rural scene of green pastures and grazing cattle.  We appreciated the warm Scotch welcome which was always extended to us and even when a casual visitor happened to "pop in", a cup of tea and something tasty was always at hand.

We often decided to explore further a-field after reaching the summit of Bracken Ridge.  We were amazed at the panorama which presented itself - a wonderful skyline with mountains studded here and there.  The old steam train could be seen puffing its way up an incline on its way to the North Coast.  Looking towards Sandgate, Moreton Bay appeared only a short distance away.

In the years following our early visits the Ridge became well known to me.  My father resigned in 1911 from the position of Postmaster with the P.M.G. Department to take up farming at Bracken Ridge and our family has resided in the district since that year.  In 1931 my parents (Mr and Mrs Charles Thomas Slaughter) celebrated their golden wedding at our farm residence.

During my sojourn on the Ridge which commenced in 1920 I have enjoyed the wsrm fellowship of the old residents such as Colonel Flewell-Smith and his son Bernard (now General Manager C.O.D.) and Geoff; Andrew and William Muller, Frant Southers, George Phillips, Charles Fruitier, Mr and Mrs Bahke Snr, Thomas Carr, Miss Nellie and Joe Brown, Fred Francis Snr.. and Mrs Broders.  A.H.C. (Fred) Slaughter farmed for a short period on the Ridge.  He was very proud of his pair of beautifully kept ponies.  His four-wheeled dog-cart drawn by his pair of ponies was something to be admired.

The children living on the Ridge had no means of transport to the Sandgate school.  They knew all the short-cuts to make their walk a little less tedious.  Macpherson's paddock was their first cross country route, but there was one big hazard - a large dairy bull.  On all occasions it appeared, they managed to scramble under the barbed wire fence along the road with little damage in the form of torn clothes and a few abrasions.

In earlier days the hilly area was known as Bracken Ridge.  Now it has mushroomed into a very large district, mainly due to the efforts of its Progress Association.  Its officers and members are to be highly commended on their efforts and their achievement to put Bracken Ridge so vividly on the map of progress.

As cars were scarce the youths rode their bikes to Sandgate in the evening.  The only hazard was a culvert which was considered to be haunted.  After a late night out, I told the story of being frightened by seeing an old woman with hair blowing over her eyes sitting behind me on my bike carriers, as I passed over the culvert.  After that evening the lads removed the carriers from their bikes for some times.

(Editor's Note: Mr Reg Slaughter now resides at Clontarf Beach)

July 1968  Page 5  Bracken Ridge Journal
Lord Mayor's Visit to Bracken Ridge

On Saturday 11th May 1968 the Lord Mayor of Brisbane, Ald. Clem Jones visited Bracken Ridge to plant a tree and unveil a plaque.  This ceremony marked the end of the first stage of the "Plant a Tree Project".

The successful completion of the scheme to date is due almost entirely to the hard working Ladies' Committee comprising Mesdames Both, Deans, Friend, Livsey, Morris and Taylor.  The Committee was responsible for obtaining from almost 100 per cent of the residents their written co-operation which enabled the Brisbane City Council to plant over four hundred trees on the footpaths of Bracken Ridge.  It is believed that Bracken Ridge is the first district where the Brisbane City Council has undertaken suburban beautification on such a large scale.

The Official Guests included the Lord Mayor, Al Clem Jones and the Lady Mayoress, Alderman A. Davis representing the Sandgate Ward, Mr John Black Patron of Bracken Ridge Progress Association, Mr. R. Henderson Secretary of Sandgate  Chamber of Commerce, Mr. G. Willmore Managing Director of Willmore & Randell Pty Ltd., and his Queensland Manager Mr. Greenway and Mrs Greenway.

At 2.30pm the Lord Mayor and Lady Mayoress were escorted to the site in Tomah Street through a guard of honour of marching girls, boy scouts, cubs and residents by the President of the Association, Mr E Coates.

After an address of welcome by the President, Ald Jones spoke on suburban development and congratulated the Progress Association on a very fine community effort.  He stated that in years to come Bracken Ridge would be a beautiful suburb and both he and his council were happy indeed to be associated with the project.

Ald. Jones then removed his coat and with the efficient handling of the special spade provided, he ably demonstrated to the large crowd present that his knowledge of tree planting was by no means small.  In a very short time the tree was correctly planted in place.  He then unveiled the plaque.

Votes of thanks were given by Association Vice President, Mr C.H. Clark, Ald A Davis and Mr G Willmore following which sheafs of gladioli were presented to the Lady Mayoress and to Mrs. E. Coates wife of Association President.

The official party then moved to the school house where afternoon tea had been prepared by the Ladies' Committee.  Entertainment on the school grounds was provided by groups of marching girls and a display was given by a pony club.  The scouts constructed a bridge and the sea scouts demonstrated the proper rigging of a sabot.

Despite overcast skies a large crowd attended and enjoyed the day.  The plaque has now been set in place in the footpath of Tomah Street outside number 69.

The second stage of the project will be commenced at a later date and will involve the planting of trees for new residents of the area and the replacing of those trees which did not survive the transplant.

The Association Sponsors a Scout Group       By  Mrs P. Turner                    Page 6

Early this year Association member Mr. N. Stewart suggested that a cub pack or scout group be formed in the district.  He was supported by Mr. D. Lawrie.

After discussion at a general meeting it was resolved that the Association should sponsor the idea.  Subsequently contacts were made and requirements obtained from local Scouts.  A preliminary meeting was then arranged.

The meeting to explore possibilities of starting Scout and Cub Packs was held in the Bracken Ridge State School on Tuesday 30th April.  It was attended by Mr. Atkins, District Commissioner, Chairman of the District.

A Group Committee was elected to support the Bracken Ridge Scout Group, Office Bearers are as follows:

Chairman:                   Mr. Livsey, 1 Barrabui Street Bracken Ridge
Hon Secretary                        Mrs. N Lennon  Bald Hills Road Bald Hills
Hon. Treasurer          Mrs. G. Bentley,  73 Tomah Street Bracken Ridge.
Any parents who have boys interested in joining Cubs (8 - 11) or the Scouts (12 - 15 yrs), should contact the Scouts who are as follows:
Group Scout Master   Mr. A. Munt,  63 Bellicent Street, Bracken Ridge
Scout Master              Mr. F. Batten  Denham Street Bracken Ridge
Asst Scout Master      Mr. G.M. Bentley, 73 Tomah St Bracken Ridge
Cub Master                 Mrs B. Wilson,  26 Enid Street Bracken Ridge
Ast. Cub Master         Mrs. P Turner 69 Tomah Street, Bracken Ridge
Asst. Cub Master        Mrs. P. Norman 71 Tomah Street Bracken Ridge

The function of the Group Committee is to raise funds to provide the Scout Group with equipment such as tents.  A permanent Scout Den will be built later.  Any parents and friends who are interested are welcome to attend any of the Group Committee meetings which are held at, the second Monday of each month in the Bracken Ridge State School.

The first of the weekly pack meetings of the Bracken Ridge Scouts and Cubs was held in the Bracken Ridge State School grounds on Saturday 25th May at

Can you spot your home in this Advertisement for the estate!


The Secretary's Corner   C.J. Tuckfield.                                            Page 7

This is our fourth issue, and it might be opportune to review what has happened in Bracken Ridge since the first issue came out a year ago.

Probably the first thing that strikes one is a  beautiful stretch of bitumen surface in front of the school.  What a pity this oasis in the desert of holes and hillocks which constitutes Denham Street has to wait so long to extend itself to cover the whole of this controversial street.

Having turned off past the school, one might perceive dotted along each street of the Estate, spindly young saplings full of promise of avenues of blooming poincianas, bauhinias and other ornamental trees.  The hard work of the ladies' committee of the Association came to its climax when the Lord Mayor ceremonially planted one of these in front of committee member Derrick Turner's home in Tomah Street, and unveiled the plaque to be seen set flush in the footpath near the tree.  The ceremony, which was covered by television and press, was followed by magnificent displays by Marching Girls, Scouts and Cubs, and a Pony Club.

A new section of the Estate is in the process of being opened by the Developers which will bring about eighty new families into the area.  In addition, a shop has now been opened in the Bald Hills Road area.

Not yet to be seen except in the vision of those who care are the district Kindergarten and building for Scouting, Judo and other young people's' activities.  Negotiations are still in progress for the acquisition of land for these purposes.  A Scouting Group has already been launched with the blessing of the Association.

While we do not claim credit for all the progress in the community, we like to think that the influence of our Association is perceptible.  Perhaps not tangible, but nevertheless most valuable is the very fact that a few men and women are willing to give a not inconsiderable portion of their leisure time just to meet and discuss the problems attending the growing pains of progress.

That there are only few is regrettable. An attendance of only ten more residents at the monthly meeting would give a tremendous impetus and much encouragement to those few, and open up new vistas of ideas for community improvements and togetherness.

What is Rotary?   by Bob Henderson (Chairman of the Sandgate Club)       Page 10

Rotary was the idea or thought of one man - a lawyer Paul Harris - who in 1905 in Chicago felt lonely so decided to invite some of his colleagues to lunch and a talk in his office.  It was decided to rotate the meetings to each office in turn and then came the name "Rotary".

This thought from one man has now spread to 142 countries with 13,171 Clubs and 630,000 Rotarians.  They are all putting "Service before Self" and carrying out the objects of Rotary.

To encourage and foster the ideal of service as a basis of worthy enterprise and, in particular to encourage and foster:
1. The development of acquaintance as an opportunity for service.
2. High ethical standards in business and professions: the recognition of the worthiness of all useful occupations; and the dignifying of each Rotarian of his occupation as an opportunity to service society.
3.The application of Service by every Rotarian to his personal, business and community life.
4. The advancement of international understanding, goodwill and peace through a world fellowship of business and professional men united in the ideal of service.
How do you become a member of Rotary.  This question is no doubt in the minds of many people.  Some seem to think that it is a very selective progress.  That is correct.  The Rotary classification principle has permitted only one member of each business or profession to join when that business or profession is carried out in the boundaries of the Club.

This means that members can nominate any person belonging to that business or profession as long as his classification is unfilled.  Should more than one nomination be received, then the Club Directors select the fellow who they feel is the leader in his classification and possesses the character and integrity to fulfil Rotary's objects.

A Rotary Club although controlled by a Board of Directors is also a member of Rotary International with its headquarters in Chicago.  In our District 260, we have 56 Clubs who are controlled by a District Governor appointed by the Clubs and who attend the International Conference in April of each year.  This is an important part of Club organisation for continually flowing out from Chicago are the ideas and service plans of every Club in the world.  Rotary is kept on a high plane with efficient organisation and control.  Sandgate Club is proud that one of its members, our Hon. Secretary Brian Knowles has been chosen as District Governor for 1969 - 1970.

The Rotary Club of Sandgate was formed in 1950 with 20 members.  This year our membership stands at 57.  Meetings are held weekly on Wednesdays at 6.15pm at Baxters Cafe.  We meet for fellowship during the meal - discuss important business - sing a song, introduce humor with a Sergeant at Arms, then listen to a speaker for 30 minutes.  The speakers are invited from all business and professions and organisations.

The Club is divided into the four services each with a Director and all members are allocated to a committee.

Firstly Club which controls all activities which ensure good fellowship - speakers and smooth running of each meeting.
Vocational.  This committee explores the avenues to promote the employer-employee relationships and many other facets of business life.
Community The raising of funds and the investigating of worthwhile projects which assist every branch of the Community.

International.  The World Community is a field which has become a very important part of Rotary.  This assistance can be given from New Guinea to India to South Africa.
On these Committees each member becomes a part of the Club.  He is expected to "make his Rotary membership effective" by attending, by discussion, by endeavouring to serve as best he can, to make some worthwhile contribution to his service.

Rotary in Sandgate has been responsible for many worthwhile projects.   Shelter Shed in the Park at Symes Grove Home, the Park in Southerdon St., Playground equipment on the foreshores.  These are the ones which you can see as you pass by, but Rotary is proud also of the projects in New Guinea - Murray Island and so many of those little thoughts for others which are granted by fellows every day.

Rotary has become a part of our Community and will continue as long as men and women put "Service before Self".

(Sadly the Rotary Club of Sandgate folded in 2016)


Bracken Ridge Journal                                  July 1968            Page 14
Letters to the Editor

Dear Sir,

As a frequent user of Denham Street, I wish to protest against the lack of courtesy, the reckless driving and the complete ignorance of road conditions shown by my fellow users of this particular street.  At least three times a week, whilst travelling along Denham Street at a safe and sensible 20 m.p.h. I have been passed by some "idiot" going 40 m.p.h. - either anxious to get home fearing the tongue lashing he will get for staying too long in the pub,, or in a hurry to get to work because he is frightened of his boss.

The frustrations of this small minded persons turns him into a maniac once he sits behind the steering wheel of a car and he thinks that other road users should always give him right of way because he is a better faster and safer driver than anyone else.  How soon he will be disillusioned, and if he loses an arm or a leg in the process, he will always have a memento to remind him of his recklessness.

Even when Denham Street is in its best condition, it is a very unsafe street to travel.  Because of the loose surface, the deep corrugations, the narrow water culverts and the long grass growing to the very edge of the road, it is necessary to take extreme care and caution whilst driving along this thorough-fare.  But notwithstanding these dangerous hazards, surely the motorist has seen the clouds of billowing dust rising in great waves behind speeding vehicles and surely the motorist must have some consideration for those people who live in Denham Street.

One does not have to live in Bracken Ridge very long to become familiar with the colours and types of vehicles which are owned by the residents of Bracken Ridge and one could nominate on the fingers of one hand the names of those thoughtless, reckless and selfish drivers who use Denham Street as a speedway.

Could we please have some sanity in our driving:  Yours faithfully,
Resident O'Ridge

(Editors note:  Denham Street is indeed a dangerous stretch of road and care should be taken when using it.  Speed should be kept as low as possible.)

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