My Articles

Grandma Shadbolt’s Christmas Pudding

Grandma Shadbolt's Christmas Pudding

Grandma Shadbolt was born Jane Whitton. She was from Lichfield in Staffordshire. In 1848, when she was 19, she was transported to Van Diemen’s Land (Tasmania)  for seven years. In a first offence she had  stolen  the sum of three pounds. Unfortunately we don’t have a photo

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THE CRICKET CHRISTMAS CAKE🏏

THE CRICKET CHRISTMAS CAKE🏏

Cricket matches,  especially Ashes series, do not usually engender  goodwill between Australia and England. However, as Christmas approached in 1932, Australia made a remarkable gesture. A giant, Ashes themed   cake was sent to London to be distributed to the city’s hospitals and children’s homes . It weighed

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Rivers Paterson – what’s in a name?

Rivers Paterson - what's in a name?

Rivers Paterson (nee Staines) was born on the day her father Thomas drowned in the Bell River, between Molong and  Wellington, in the central west of New South Wales. Thomas Staines was an ex-convict; a former blacksmith and farrier from Leicestershire. He was transported for life in

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The Magnifying Glass 🔍

The Magnifying Glass 🔍

A magnifying glass provided as much enjoyment to children of the Baby Boomer generation (Yes, I’m one) as expensive toys. The following photo was taken at my birthday party in 1957. It’s hard to spot, but the little boy  is holding our large magnifying glass to his

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A Taste of Paris in Katoomba 🥐

A Taste of Paris in Katoomba 🥐

I do realize that Katoomba is a long way from Paris,  but we Blue Mountains residents adore  croissants as much as anyone else around the world.  This sulphur crested cockatoo is no different. But which ones to choose?   Well don’t look at me mate, it’s entirely  your

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SUZANNE – THE BEAUTY CONTESTANT WHO BECAME A LADY

SUZANNE - THE BEAUTY CONTESTANT WHO BECAME A LADY

Suzanne (originally Susannah) Evans was one of five children. She was born in 1893 in the gold mining town of Walhalla, Victoria to John and Alice Evans. Her mother died when she was only eight years old. In 1914 the Evans family moved to Melbourne and the

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SAO – OFTEN BUTTERED, NEVER BETTERED

SAO - OFTEN BUTTERED, NEVER BETTERED

Sao biscuits are almost as iconic as Anzacs, although  they were far too delicate to send to our troops in the first and second world wars.  However, in 1933 an  anonymous poet did conjure a military connection dating back to a far earlier conflict. Apparently it was

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MUSHROOMS OF THE FIELDS

MUSHROOMS OF THE FIELDS

Picking blackberries and collecting field mushrooms…oh the  simple pleasures of a 1950s Tasmanian childhood. There were a couple of  uncultivated paddocks on our farm that produced basketfuls of mushrooms every autumn.  We used to eat them fried on toast for breakfast. Plain old white bread in those

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ROYAL HOBART REGATTA

ROYAL HOBART REGATTA

NOTE – This is not intended a full history of the Hobart Regatta , merely some stories and facts that intrigued me. My interest in the subject was piqued when I was cleaning some of my partner Rob’s old sailing trophies.  One was from the 1964 Hobart

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The Eucalyptus Rope.

The Eucalyptus Rope.

Gardens are places of wonder, especially one like mine that borders the Australian bush. Here in the NSW Blue Mountains  a  eucalyptus tree was the source of great fun recently, but also a sad tale of pride coming before a fall.            

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