Page 1 of 1 pages
(2 stories)

Peace Celebration Avenel - 28 Aug 1945 (1945)

contributed by greenfingers
(contact greenfingers about this story | see more stories from greenfingers)

When the news was heard that hostilities had ended, there was a wave of joyfulness over Avenel. Bells were rung vigorously, bunting displayed everywhere, and a general feeling of excitement prevailed. There was also a great sense of relief and thanksgiving to know that relief snips with food, medical supplies doctors and nurses would be rushed to our prisoners-of-war in Japanese hands, among whom are Laurie Melbourne and F. Gimwade and N. Morison. To those who’s loved ones were missing or had paid the supreme sacrifice, the heart-felt sympathy of the community is extended. We remember with pride and honour the names of Captain Jack Shelton, Sgt Jack Nightingale and Pte Norm Wilkinson who died in action and Pilot Officer K. Hollaway who is posted missing whilst on operations over the North Sea.

When it was evident the V. P. day was imminent, a meeting of residents was hurriedly held on Monday night and a program made so that Avenel would celebrate the occasion in a worth while manner. With Cr F. Vearing as Chairman, Mr Freitag as secretary, and Miss F. Gadd as leader of the ladies committee, an effective committee was formed and all arrangements were made and the functions carried out in a manner which has earned the appreciative thanks of young and old.

On Wednesday afternoon the school children under the direction of the head teacher, Mr Freitag, marched down Bank St and laid the wreath on the monument. Wreaths were also laid by the Returned Soldiers League and others. Children and Returned Soldiers then marched to the Public Hall where a very fine Thanks-giving Service was held. Cr F. Vearing who opened the service spoke of the general feeling of thanksgiving that the sacrifices of war had ended. Mr F. N. Grimwade spoke of the Australian’s narrow escape from a bestial enemy and the thanks we owed to our magnificent fighting forces. He also paid tribute to the glorious part played by our American Allies. Mr G. A. Stagg also paid tribute to our troops. He eulogised time work done throughout the war for patriotic funds by some Avenel workers. He emphasized the part Britain played when she stood alone against the enemy. Both these speakers spoke very sincerely, voiced the sentiments of the crowded Hall, and, as I have intimated earlier, there was an obvious feeling of thankfulness that our POW’s would be speedily succoured and our joy for peace was tempered by the sorrow of those who mourned the loss of gallant boys

Miss Pat O’Connor, accompanied by Mr W. Marshall, rendered four songs which were enjoyed immensely. Mr Freitag thanked the speakers and artists for assisting so capably at such short notice.

On Wednesday night the merry making got away to a good start when the bonfire was lit. Though it was some what tardy in burning, the pepper branches gave out a most spectacular display of sparks. The bonfire was followed by community singers, who under the direction of Cr H. Sidebottom filled the Hall, and with Mrs S. Bollard at the piano, one song after another was kept going in quick succession. Miss Bonnie Wilson, who is the possessed of a fine voice assisted the solo’s. Mr W. Green surprised the audience with his Scotch rendition, - “Like a Bottle of Scotch - there wasn’t enough to satisfy,” Community singing was followed by a dance until midnight. A sumptuous supper was supplied by the ladies

On Thursday afternoon a monster picnic was held in the Race Course and it was a great show indeed. Everyone was catered for - from the tiny tots to the grey-heads. Children’s races and jumps; young men and women’s races of various types, cycle races, clock golf, football kicking, etc, even to a draught horse race which was won by M. Ferguson’s “Go Sum” (W. Ferguson)

The children were the special charge of Mr F. Green who was kept busy seeing that all were treated to two ice creams and lollies. The winner of the old buffers race, Mr J. Burt, was invested with a championship ribbon by Cr Vearing amid the applause by the crowd. Another feature of the afternoon was the gay party caps made by Mr and Mrs Burgoyne for the school children.

Once again the ladies did a truly marvellous job in catering for and giving afternoon tea to the children as well as the adults. The tables were simply loaded with all sorts of delicious cookery which must have taken time to prepare. Finance for ice-cream, lollies, and prizes was speedily overcome from donations from numerous residents. The cash left over will probably be put into Serviceman’s Welcome Home, etc.

At night the jollifications were rounded off by a dance in the hall which was simply packed. Excellent music was supplied free by Messers’s J. Bolton, H. White and A. Harrington junr. And Mrs Bollard. The folk were in great trim and a great spirit of merriment prevailed all night. To see Messers’s G. Stagg, C. Ewing, and J. Burt, as well as others, do the Alberts in a style reminiscent of twenty years ago, was a sure sign of a happy night. Novelty dances were - Monto Carlo won by Cpl Neil and Mrs D. Neil, (1 Pound prize donated by Mr Thompson of C.R.B. (Country Roads Board). The 80 years combined age waltzing, by “Pop” a soldier from Mangalore, and Mrs V. Young; the juvenile dance by Joyce and Les Sidebottom. The euchre tournament was won by Mr C. Ewing and Mrs Melbourne. Mr Freitag thanked the ladies for the way they had achieved the almost incredible task of catering for three monster turnouts in two days. There was enough food for another. He also thanked the orchestra for supplying the music. Mr W. Green, in his humorous vein, thanked Mr Freitag for his share in organising the entertainment.

Courtesy Euroa Gazette

Is this story rude, offensive or defamatory; spam; or not about and/or of the place? If so, Report it