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Janet Iles centenary celebrated

MEMORIES came flooding back for the many attending the centenary of the Janet Iles boat at the Port Welshpool Maritime Museum on Saturday, October 11.
The Janet Iles revolutionised commencial fishing when she was designed by W.BM Smith in 1914.
Max Wood a past president of the museum, recalled how, “As a child there were lots of parties of fifty people on the Janet Iles on outings to Wilsons Promontory.
“The men would fish from the boat while the wives and children would play on the beach at Sealers Cove or Refuge Cove.
“It was a big trip by car to the prom in those days,” he said.
As a past president of the museum and one who served on the committee for a long time, Mr Wood knew the Smith family well.
The centenary included demonstrations of fish filleting, net making and children’s face painting and was attended by the South Gippsland Shire mayor Cr Jim Fawcett, his wife Joan, and Member for Eastern Victoria Danny O’Brien and his family.
Janet Taylor, the granddaughter of W.B.M Smith and the daughter of Arnie Smith who donated the Janet Iles and the house, the first in Port Welshpool, to the shire recalled how progressive her grandfather was and the work he did to help establish the port.
“They were catching so many fish in those days, 30 ton in a net, and my grandfather was instrumental in building the tramway from the port to the railway line which was the key to getting the fish to Melbourne.
“Getting the catch to Melbourne, he believed, would lower the price and everybody, including the poor, could enjoy fish.”
Mrs Taylor spoke of how proud and emotional she was at continuing to keep alive the history of her father and grandfather.
“It was so important to my father to keep the history of Port Welshpool alive.”

Three generations: from left W.B.M Smith’s great granddaughter, Suzanne Taylor; granddaughter, Janet Taylor and great great granddaughter, Kiana Hadley; in front of the Janet Iles.

Three generations: from left W.B.M Smith’s great granddaughter, Suzanne Taylor; granddaughter, Janet Taylor and great great granddaughter, Kiana Hadley; in front of the Janet Iles.

 

Short URL: http://thestar.com.au/?p=12528

Posted by on Oct 14 2014. Filed under Community. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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