Community News

Probus Club of Maclean

President Maureen welcomed the 20 members to the first meeting of 2020 and asked that members join with her in observing a minute’s silence in memory of John Moore who passed away on January 24.

Maureen Castle entertained members with humorous extracts from Church Bulletins and Announcements and secondly as a lead into today’s guest speaker recited Deirdre Ann Schey’s poem “Summer Prelude in Maclean”.

President Maureen introduced guest Speaker Bob MacPherson who spoke on the history of “Maclean the Scottish Town in Australia”. Bob opened by speaking of his involvement with the Maclean Highland Games Committee, but it was in 1986 that Graham Leach, the local CBA Branch manager floated the idea of promoting Maclean as ‘The Scottish Town in Australia”. Initially the Chamber of Commerce were involved in the project, but it was Graham’s intention that it needed to be broadened and more community involved and not commercially based. A committee led by Howard Cowling commenced the process that we now would recognise. A Scottish Shop was established next to the butcher on the corner of River Street and Argyle Lane. This property acted then as now as an outlet for Scottish memorabilia and also as a tourist information centre, significant now that the Ferry Park tourist office has closed. The intention was a marketing theme to get people off the highway into the town, utilising decorated Scottish themed wind sails, dual Gaelic/English Street names, parks and public areas, tartan painted telegraph poles and highway hoardings promoting the town “The Scottish Town in Australia”. Bob commented that all these services are provided by a wonderful band of volunteers.

Ken Muller thanked Bob for his informative address and presented Bob with a token of appreciation to the acclamation of members.

Ken Muller