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Proposal to seal road from Rushworth to Nagambie

Michael Clarke, local Member of the Legislative Council, approached the Country Roads Board, proposing the sealing of the road south of Rushworth through to Bailieston, so as to join with the Nagambie – Heathcote Road near Chinamen’s Bridge.

Waranga Shire had sealed the first two miles out of town and had sought external funds to complete three more miles. (Is there an echo of this situation today, just 50 years later, with Maurice Clarke’s recent petition just to make even a small stretch of the still unsealed road safe? (I don’t think Maurice Clarke and Michael Clarke are related.)

Neville Hepples and Mick Linford served the last grocery customers at Hepples’ Emporium, as Neville retired, selling the building to Ibis Milk Products.

The autumn rains had come with over two inches (53mm) recorded in a week at Rushworth in the middle of April, taking the year’s total to nine and a half inches, half the annual average. Goulburn river flooding severely damaged cellars at the newly-opened Michelton Winery.

A two-car collision of vehicles driven by Peter McEvoy of Colbinabbin and Neville Clarke of Rushworth placed Peter in Mooroopna Hospital with a broken leg.

Waranga Shire

Council approved four subdivisions at Gobarup, each creating 40-acre blocks, adding to a number of similar subdivisions across the forest area east, south and south- west of Rushworth. Melbourne-based property developers were advertising blocks for sale for people later to become known as “tree-changers”.

Council sent a deputation to the Ministers for Mines and Tourism, after advice from insurance sources that the Shire would only be insured if the Balaclava Mine was fenced. The hunt was on to find funds for the fence.


With no doctor at Rushworth, Waranga Memorial Hospital was receiving a weekly visit from a Senior Resident doctor from Mooroopna, and only accepting older patients with geriatric conditions. No acute medical cases were being admitted. (Is there an echo of this today?)


Rushworth Primary was into plants and trees. Jill and Heather in Grade 6 had planted some seeds collected from a wattle tree near Wanalta Post Office by Mrs McMurtrie. Grades 1 and 2 reported great height in their beans.

Mr Ross taught Grade 4 some new games to be played outside, called “schlag ball, guard ball and camp-down races”. (Not Olympic sports yet Rossy.) Mrs Mackinder taught her class a new game called solitaire.

Children made a wreath for ANZAC Day, and “Preps Greg and Haydn walked twenty km in a Walkathon”. (Five-year-olds walking twenty km? Child abuse these days!)

Murchison Primary Mothers’ Club was headed up by Mrs Ruth Anderson, Mrs Marion de Klijn and Mrs Liz Hart.


Colbo Young Farmers took a bus to Geelong for State Achievement Day at Geelong Showgrounds, Geoff Weppner finishing a little behind the leaders in the Welding competition, Shane Ryan a little further behind in Tractor Driving, with “an entertaining weekend being had by all”. (Not sure I would have wanted to be the bus driver.)

Rushworth Historical Society welcomed “six car-loads of visitors”, guided to district attractions in steady rain by Ken King, finishing as guests of Kevin Jones at the eucalyptus factory. A picnic lunch planned for Whroo was held in the Shire Hall supper room.

Rushworth Senior Citizens also welcomed sixteen visitors from Stanhope Senior Citizens, with singing entertainment from Tony Crosbie, Shirley Jacobsen and Nancy Cruz. Three competitions resulted in wins for Mrs Johansen (dinner), Lucy Barlow (doll) and Judy Lambden (towels). (What were you doing there, Jude? You were not a senior citizen in 1974!)

On CWA International Day, Miss Lucy Munsey spoke to Rushworth CWA branch about her recent overseas trip.

The Band’s AGM was called by President Chief Perry and similarly long-serving secretary Geoff Beck.


Heather McLean of Rushworth and Joel Reed of Oak Park announced their engagement. Likewise Julie Walsh of Rushworth and Gary McKendry of Highett.

Passing was Miss Jessie Hammond, who was Heather McLean’s great-aunt.

Geoff and Lorraine Blackshaw took over Lloyds’ Electrical and Radio shop at Rushworth, allowing Jim Lloyd to focus on operating the TAB, though he still did radio and TV repairs.


Girgarre, Rushworth and Colbinabbin Football Clubs reported practice matches, signing of new players and clearances of departing players. Optimism was plentiful. Officials appointed at Rushworth included senior timekeepers Cec Bradley and Duncan McLean, senior goal-umpire Murray Hitchcock, reserves goal-umpire Chief Perry, boundary umpires Graeme Hageman and Simon Harrop, scoreboard Noel Merryfull, gatekeepers Tom Moylan, Bill Campbell, Joe Kenny, Ginger Perry and Ian Borger, and boot-studder Craig Robbins (Remember boot-studders?)

Colbo 16-12 beat Rushworth 7-12 in deep mud at Colbo, naming Dave Pinniger (3 goals), Ian Reid, Gerry Brown, D. McCormack, John Hamilton and Glen McTaggert. Alec Horne kicked three for the Tigers, named in the best with Herb Barlow, Bill Barlow, Bob Hurley, Glen Heily, John Raglus and Mick O’Sullivan.

Stanhope was still in the big Goulburn Valley League and after an early start to the season propped up the ladder with three losses. The paper did not report match details.

Girgarre beat Murchison in the opening round, all matches being very close. Then Murchison 3-3 went under to Nagambie on 11-16, with G. Adams, B. Finnigan, N. Hourigan and K. Delahey mentioned for Murch.


Robyn Lambden, Julie Pearce and Leayne Hawking were named for Rushworth A-grade, in a win over Colbo by seven goals. B-grade also won, with Wendy Jones, Bev Draper, Cathy Poulson and Gwen “Kealing” showing out. (Probably Gwen Keally, as spelling was sometimes guesswork.)

Carpet Bowls

Rushworth Club was getting out the little bowls and rolling out carpet, Clive Wootton presiding, George Kolenaty as secretary- treasurer. Saluting on opening night were Jeff Geddes, Mrs Wootton, Bruce Wootton and Mrs Duke.


Most of Rushworth’s golfers jibbed, because of rain. Did not bother Craig Teasdale on 42 stableford points, over older brother Stephen on 37 points. Jean Branson and Peter Home won a mixed event, as Dot Aitken hit nearest the pin.

The following week Bob Barlow and Don Jessup won A-grade. In B-grade, Max Richards was victorious. Versatile Bruce Wootton thought he was playing cricket, hitting 113, before his handicap of 36 was deducted. Woot’s nett 77 put him in third place. (I hear he has found his clubs in the garage and may make a comeback!)