The Port Adelaide Rowing Club has a proud history spanning 130 years. It was recorded by David Martin, with the help of Jack Ward and Derek Swann, in a book. The book is reproduced on this page.
The discovery of the Port River came about after Captain Collett Barker landed at Port Noarlunga on April 1831 and took a party to the top of Mt Lofty. From there he sighted the inlet on 19 April 1831. After returning to his ship, “Isabella”, he proceeded to examine the river, noted fertile plains behind and its possibilities as a harbour. Later Captain Charles Sturt made his observations and supported Captain Barker’s conclusions.
On 18 December 1836 the brigs “Rapid” and “Tam O’ Shanter” sailed into Barker’s Inlet and the river. Colonel William Light, surveyor, was aboard “Rapid”. After also visiting Encounter Bay, the Murray Mouth and Nepean Bay, Kangaroo Island, Light chose the Port River site for the new settlement.
The local aboriginal people at that time called the area Yertabulti, meaning a salt swamp. When the first settlers ships arrived they were met by a boy, Panartatja, of the Kaurna tribe who inhabitated the Adelaide Plains. The area selected for the township was low lying and the first port began to grow at the end of what is now known as the Old Port Road at Queenstown. Trouble was frequently encountered with flood tides, with the result that it became known as Port Misery and was eventually abandoned because it could not hope to handle the rapid growth of trade. When Port Adelaide was proclaimed on 25 May 1837 by Governor Hindmarsh there were fourteen ships in port. On 25 May 1839 a new road to the new port was begun formally by Governor Gawler and the new wharf was named McLaren Wharf for Mr D McLaren, Manager of the South Australia Company. Embankments along North Parade almost made the Port an island and it was nearly possible to circumnavigate the entire settlement. Where Commercial Road is now, was mainly a creek with a wooden bridge spanning the northern end. Dredging had been proceeding to obtain silt to build up the town and other areas – a practice continued in modern times by the SA Harbours Board. It was still possible then for boys to wade into the middle of the river to gather cockles.
Captain Thomas Lipson, an English naval officer, was the first Harbourmaster, Collector of Customs and also magistrate for some years before he retired in 1856.
A bad flood tide brought about by gale force winds caused severe damage in May 1865 with flooding in Leadenhall, Quebec, Dale, Church and Marryat Streets and The Minories. Nile and St Vincent Streets were not so badly affected. Settlements also developed at Birkenhead, Ethelton, Semaphore, Largs, Portland, Queenstown, Alberton and Rosewater. Some of those originally had their own councils.
At that stage the local scene began to resemble, in a small way, the situation on the Thames River in London. Here were people from the settlements on the north bank wanting to cross to the town on the south side. Those who did not have their own boats had to engage ferrymen at Birkenhead and Ethelton or Glanville. It was not until 1857 that a wooden bridge was built across the river at Glanville from sites later used for the Copper Company’s Wharf and the Sugar Refinery. This facility had a big influence on the development of the peninsula. The steel Jervois Bridge was opened in 1878. Birkenhead residents had to wait until 14 December 1940 before a bridge was provided for their convenience, despite it being requested much earlier by the residents and advocated again by our eminent member, Joseph H Clouston, who was involved in local government. However, the advent of the bridge was to change completely the close-knit nature of that small community.
For twenty one years a power ferry owned by the Murch family had provided a service for nearly eighteen hours daily across the river. Neighbours either travelled across together or met while waiting at the ferry shelters. Once the bridge opened those meetings seldom occurred. Life in Birkenhead was never quite the same again.
The growth of rowing at Port Adelaide followed a pattern similar to those which occurred in Sydney and Hobart, that is, races between crews from ships that were in port. The oldest known of those was a regatta held in September 1838 by Captain Hart of the “Porcher” and Cook of the “Eden” for the amusement of their shore-going friends. There was a sailing race and two rowing races. Four rowing entries contested and three of the boats were steered by Captains Hart, Cook and Lipson. At the conclusion of the regatta 100 guests were entertained at dinner aboard “Porcher” and of those thirty men and women remained on board overnight before returning to Adelaide.
Another early regatta, perhaps the first official Port Adelaide Regatta, was held under the patronage of Governor Young on 13 December 1839, when there were eight events beginning at 10.00am. There were two sailing races and rowing events, such as, whale boats, amateurs’ sweepstakes, four oared whale boats, waterman’s prize, gig race and waterman’s sweepstakes. By 1867 the Port Adelaide regatta was held on Hew Years Day and the programme had increased to ten events with the introduction of sculling and a novelty competition, the Duck Hunt. The ‘duck” was a human person, with three minutes start being given to the duck to be chased by one four-oared gig not less than twenty feet in length. If not caught within twenty minutes the duck took the prize, two pounds ten shillings. Most of the races were for money prizes ranging from seven pounds ten shillings to two guineas. Some races carried individual prizes of engraved cups.
By that time rowing clubs began to develop and all together seven clubs formed or attempted to form, before 1900. They were Pelican before 1860, SA Yacht & Rowing 1861, Nautilus 1866, Australian Boating Company 1868, Port Adelaide 1870, Birkenhead 1879 and Port Adelaide Working Men’s 1890. A Semaphore Rowing Club raced in 1914 at the Henley-on-Torrens regatta but it was not re-established after the Great War. A leading personality in that venture was A Monte who had been a prominent sculler in the 1880’s when affiliated with Port.
1877 to 1899
In looking over the life of the Port Adelaide Rowing Club (PARC) from 1877 onwards it is noticeable how the success of the Club was influenced by the presence of members who possessed strong resolution, leadership, organising ability and desire to succeed. Inevitably the men concerned occupied the Stroke seat when they rowed and it is in those times that the Club enjoyed periods of outstanding success. Of course they did not achieve it alone and the baking of good men and true to make up the crew is acknowledged. So we can define the eras as Playfair 1877-1883, Cruickshank 1884-1894, Clouston 1899-1905, Lawtons 1906-09, Salkelds 1924-29, the Secretaries 1932-39 and the Coldwells 1950-75.
In this period Playfair, Cruickshank and Clouston all stamped their presence on the progress of the Club. Jack Playfair had been a Foundation Member of the SA Yacht & Rowing Club in 1861 and consequently was an experienced exponent of the art when he assumed Captaincy of PARC from 1877 to 1880.
He won championships in Fours in 1879 and 1880 and is known to have coached, after Cruickshank, in 1896. He also officiated for the SA Rowing Association as Starter and Judge for a number of years.
Bob Cruickshank’s influence spread from 1884 to 1894 as Captain and Coach. It is not known where Cruickshank acquired his rowing skill. As the son of a Birkenhead shipwright he probably had free access to boats at a very early age. It seems his rowing with Adelaide University coincided with his period of active rowing with PARC. His profession undoubtedly made him a forceful and effective administrator at club and association levels. He won Champion Fours from 1884 to 1886.
Joe Clouston, who began rowing in 1883, first excelled in crew rowing in Champion Fours in 1892 after having won Champion Sculls in 1891 and 1892. All together he won the Sculls championship six times, Fours four times and Eights four times. After retiring from active rowing in 1905 his influence continued in Club and Association activities in various capacities until 1946 when he handed over the “reins” of the wartime guardians at the age of 76. So we can say Playfair nurtured Cruickshank, who developed Clouston, who was to train Charlie Lawton in the 1890’s.
We shall now proceed to look over the seasons year by year to record some of the significant occurrences as they happened to establish a form of historical record of the PARC.
1877 – Thirty persons attended the inaugural meeting chaired by My Blakey at the Birkenhead Hotel. An acting committee was appointed to collect the names of intending members and it was hoped that a sufficient number would be obtained to enable the Club to be organised without delay.
1878 – At the Port Adelaide Regatta on 1 January 1878 twenty thousand people were present. Five rowing races were contested. In the Champion Fours, prize of twenty five pounds, the crew of Gynam (B), McCarthy (2), Miller (3), Blakey (S) and S McBeth (Cox) won. The sculls race, prize of five pounds, was won by T Matson. It was a grimy, dusty day and a man drowned in the river during the proceedings in a scene of ships arrayed in bunting and a brass band to entertain.
In November the draft rules of the PARC were presented for adoption at the Ship Inn. The Club now had 70 members, two fours and a pair oared clinker, which could be rowed with sliding or fixed seats, imported from Melbourne. The acquisition of an eight was being contemplated.
1879 – The New Years Day Regatta on 1 January 1879 attracted twenty thousand people and the weather was again oppressive. The principle event was a four oared boat race over three and a half miles for fifty pounds. Three PARC crews nominated nut there was no other opposition. The winner was “Queen” a Port Adelaide built boat. The Crew were J Smith (B), C Hayes (2), T Carter (3), J Playfair (S) and F Wald (Cox). The Youths Pair race was won by PARC in J Fraser and M Smith. A lady fell into the river from a ship and was rescued by two men jumping into the river from a passing boat.
1880 – The year started with New Years Day Regatta attended by a crowd of 20,000. The Champion Fours race, three and a quarter miles, prize five silver cups valued at fifty pounds, was won by PARC against Adelaide Rowing Club. The crew were J Playfair (S), G Playfair (3), E Lamb (2), D Sykes (B) and F Smith (Cox). In the sculling race T Matson won with A Monte second.
On 31 January 1880 the monthly race against Adelaide Rowing Club, who now had their won boatshed on Cruickshank Corner, was inaugurated. The first race from the northern end of Snowden’s Beach to the Adelaide boatshed was won by PARC in 7 minutes in “Britannia” with crew H Thomas (B), WJ Williams (2), E Lamb (3), T Matson (S) and T Smith (Cox). Future races were to end near McLaren Wharf.
In April the third monthly race was won by PARC in “Neptune” crewed by T Gifford (B), A Wald (2), W Fletcher (3), J Smith (S). PARC was also second in “Britannia”.
In September it was decided to purchase an eight oared boat from Edwards, Melbourne and to lengthen the boatshed. The Mayor of Adelaide, Mr ET Smith, promised a fifty guinea prize for the first eight oared race. In September it was also decided to apply for admission to the Victorian Rowing Association to be eligible to compete in Melbourne events.
1881 – The New Years Day Regatta was marked by the appearance of crews representing the Port Adelaide Football Club in a boat bearing that title in the Champion Fours and sculling races. They were beaten, however, by PARC in the “Queen” and “Franklin” in the fours and by A Monte sculling in “new Deceiver”. The four oared Gigs race winners were W Manson (B), J Miller (2), T Matson (3), W Fletcher (S) and J Coleman (Cox).
1882 – The New Years Day Regatta Champion Fours race was won by W Manson (B), T Matson (2), J Miller (3), W Fletcher (S) and J Coleman (Cox) in “Franklin”. T Matson defeated A Monte in the sculls.
1883 – The New Years Day Regatta crowd mainly congregated on Queens and McLaren Wharves. The Champion Fours was won by PARC in “Franklin” with a crew of W Manson (B), J Smith (2), J Miller (3), T Matson (S) and J Coleman (Cox). A Monte won sculls.
In July the members decided not to join the SA Rowing Association but to support the Adelaide Rowing Association. In October Joe Clouston became a member.
1884 – The New Years Day Regatta Champion Fours was won by the Port Adelaide Football Club with PARC second. The winning crew was T Philcox (B), T Turnbull (2), R Walsh (3), R Cruickshank (S) and A Fraser (Cox). A man, either intoxicated by music or something stronger, jumped from the yardarm of the flagship into the river, partially stunning himself. After his first rescue he was again found in the water and taken to safety by police.
1885 – The New Years Day Regatta Champion Fours race was won by the Port Adelaide Football Club with PARC second. The winning crew was R Walsh (B), T Turnbull (2), F Smith (3), R Cruickshank (S) and A Fraser (Cox). The Football Club also won the Pairs race with Cruickshank, W Lewis and A Fraser (Cox). Joe Clouston won the Youth Pairs with J Craigie. Alf LeLeu competed as cox and youth rower.
In October the Club decided to unite with the Adelaide Rowing Association.
1886 – The first eight oared race to be held on SA waters was rowed on the Port River in November as a result of a challenge by PARC against Adelaide Rowing Club. People flocked down in crowds to see the event. Vessels lying at the wharfs were besieged and every available vantage point was taken. The race was rowed upstream from No. 3 Beacon.
The PARC crew comprised WR Woodridge (B), J Williams (2), C Clouston (3), W Lewis (4), R Walsh (5), T Turnbull (6), F Smith (7) and R Cruickshank (S).
The Adelaide boat was said to be old and unsuitable for racing and the PARC boat was described as “worse”. PARC led soon after the start and maintained it to Snowden’s Beach. When opposite No. 2 Beacon the PARC No. 3 rigger broke and C Clouston rolled himself overboard. The crew raced on but, thereafter, were unable to overtake Adelaide who won by a length and a quarter.
1887 – The New Years Day Regatta Champion Fours race was cancelled. PARC won the four oared Gigs race with W Wooldridge (B), CH Clouston (2), F LeLeu (3), J Smith (S) and A LeLeu (Cox). Joe Clouston won the Youth Pairs with H Fraser. A Ladies Pairs race was introduced.
In November the first inter-colonial eight oared event was raced at Port Adelaide. Victoria, represented by the Williamstown Rowing Club, won. NSW would not enter, refusing to row against manual labour oarsmen or trade amateurs. South Australia was stroked by R Cruickshank.
1888 – In November a new eight oared boat, built by Playfair and McFarlane at Port Adelaide, was launched and named “Port Adelaide”. The christening was performed by a Miss Hack.
In December PARC defeated the Rest of SA Rowing Association over three and a half miles. The crew was W Wooldridge (B), W Sweetapple (2), W Cole (3), C Clouston (4), J Butler (5), J Clouston (6), F Smith (7), R Cruickshank (S) and W Philcox (Cox).
1889 – At this year’s New Years Day Regatta a crewman in one of the yachts competing in the sailing races was drowned. The Champion Fours was won by PARC using the boat “South Australian”. They lead early from Adelaide and were three lengths clear at the Coalshed Creek. They passed the winning post six lengths clear in 21 minutes 5 seconds. The crew was F Smith (B), J Clouston (2), C Clouston (3), R Cruickshank (S) and W Philcox (Cox). A Monte defeated Cruickshank in the sculls. Mr AE Webb suggested the amalgamation of the New Years Day Regatta events and of the Torrens Spring Regatta. The combined event was to be held in November each year and the annual eight oared race rowed in February or March to avoid Christmas training and to facilitate State selection. He also advocated the erection of an Association boatshed at the Port.
In December the Adelaide University eight stroked by R Cruickshank defeated Melbourne University on the Port River. WR Wooldridge rowed bow. Raced over two and a half miles from the North Arm to the New Dock, Adelaide used the PARC eight, “Port Adelaide”.
1890 – The New Years Day Regatta Champion Fours was won by the Williamstown Rowing Club from PARC. Joe Clouston contested the Champion Sculls for the first time, losing by half a length to an experienced sculler, with A Monte further back. Birkenhead Rowing Club also competed in the regatta.
1891 – At the New Years Day Regatta, Joe Clouston won the Champion Sculls easily. In March an eight oared race on the Port River between Adelaide Rowing Club and PARC resulted in a win for Adelaide. PARC boasted the lightest and youngest crew that had rowed, namely, average weight 9st. 12lbs and average age 19 and a half. The PARC crew was E Cterctko (B), H Martinson (2), W Robertson (3), Unknown (4), A Fisher (5), J Clouston (6), A Lewis (7) an R Cruickshank (S).
In December the first eight oared championship under the auspices of the SA Rowing Association was won by University. Other contestants were Adelaide, Commercials and PARC. The PARC crew was E Cterctko (B), W Robertson (2), A Fisher (3), C Stewart (4), W Wooldridge (5), A Lewis (6), R Cruickshank (7), J Clouston (S) and J Philcox (Cox).
1892 – Joe Clouston won the New Years Day Regatta Champion Sculls from two other Portonians, A Monte and R Morrow. The prizes were first, ten guineas and a trophy, second, five guineas. In the Working Men’s race for fours, the crew of “Olive” comprised four members of the Sawford family (Jno, A, J and William) with A Walker (Cox). The Champion Fours race was won by Moonta Rowing Club from Port Augusta and Birkenhead Rowing Clubs. PARC won the Junior Four oar Clinker race in “Austral” with the crew of F Cullen, W Hayter, W Tulloch, C Stewart and J Philcox (Cox). Another PARC crew of G Lewis, J Lewis, C McLachlan, R Turnbull and A Allen (Cox) was second. R Morrow won the Maiden Sculls.
In December conflict between the Port Adelaide Regatta organisers and the SA Rowing Association flared after the latter body insisted that their amateur oarsmen could no longer compete against competitors taking cash prizes, with the edict “No money prize shall be competed for”. The dispute resulted in the resignations of Messrs. EG Blackmore, R Cruickshank and EC Clucas, and all SA Rowing Association men who held positions on the Port Adelaide Regatta committee. In December PARC again won Champion Fours from Adelaide Rowing Club. This was the second championship under the auspices of the SA Rowing Association and the first race for the Bullock Cup. The Port crew was TW Plaisted (B), A Lewis (2), W Wooldridge (3), J Clouston (S) and C Sweeney (Cox) in a boat built by Fuller of Melbourne. It was said that, for his age, J Clouston was probably the best and most popular oarsman that the colony had produced and one who gave promise for the future.
1893 – In January, R Morrow (PARC) won the Champion Sculls from Steele and Clouston. Both Morrow and Steele raced in new boats whilst Clouston’s filled with water after being damaged on the way to the start line. Morrow’s shell, built by Edwards, Melbourne, measured 32 feet.
In January a meeting of the Port Adelaide Regatta committee decided to offer a prize of one hundred pounds for an eight oared race on the Port River with thirty pounds for second place. The race took place in March with only two contestants, the Moonta and Birkenhead Rowing Clubs. The race was won by the Moonta crew which included six members of the Simms family. The prize money was reduced to fifty pounds due to lack of entries.
In December the new eight, “War-i-an” (Follow Me) was launched and christened by Mrs CC Kingston. The ceremony was attended by representatives from University, Banks, Commercial and Birkenhead clubs.
1894 – The Champion Sculls race was incorporated in the New Years Day Regatta programme by arrangement between the SA Rowing Association and the Port Adelaide Regatta committee. Joe Clouston defeated R Morrow in a very good race. Commercials defeated PARC in fours and Port Pirie Rowing Club won the All-Comers Champion race for fours. PARC won the Maiden Eight and Junior Four races. In February PARC entered two crews for Champion Eights but neither was successful against Adelaide and Commercial Rowing Clubs.
In March PARC won the Champion Fours from Commercial and Adelaide Rowing Clubs with the crew of AB Cornell (B), A Lewis (2), W Wooldridge (3), J Clouston (S) and C Sweeney (Cox). PARC rowed in a “Clasper” boat borrowed from University and although ten lengths ahead at the finish, just reached the line.
1895 – In February, Clouston and Morrow met again to contest the Champion Sculls. Clouston had borrowed a better boat from the University club. The race was marred by the sudden illness of Morrow soon after the start. Clouston showed sportsmanship by stopping and returning to speak to Morrow. They re-started on level terms, but Morrow was still affected and made for shore.
Finally Morrow had to walk back with assistance from his club mates and Clouston, and reached the Port at 7.30pm. Neither Adelaide nor University entered for the Champion Eights race in March. Commercials proved too good for the PARC who were represented by D Blyth (B), K McKenzie (2), R Blyth (3), W Hayter (4), J McKenzie (5), AB Cornell (6), A Fisher (7), J Clouston (S) and S Loveday (Cox).
1896 – Joe Clouston registered another win in the Champion Sculls in February against Steele of Adelaide and Fahey of Norwood Boat Club. Clouston had purchased Morrow’s good boat. In the Champion Eights in March Norwood Boat Club was the winner from Commercials, Port and Adelaide in that order in very calm conditions. Norwood used a boat sent to hem from Melbourne by Sir Edwin Smith after it had won the intercolonial eights in Brisbane. There were new members in the Port crew, namely, J Tait (B), W Hayter (2), H Martinson (3), R Blyth (4), G Ward (5), J Clouston (6), K McKenzie (7), AB Cornell (S) and R Allen (Cox).
In November, due to financial problems, the PARC approached the Port Adelaide Athletic Club with an offer for them to take over all the fixtures and everything belonging to the Club, including a debt of forty pounds. The Athletic Club had a strong membership at one guinea per annum and welcomed the opportunity to extend the scope of its activities. The new club was expected to be known as the Athletics Club.
1897 – After winning the Champion Eights earlier in the month, Adelaide Rowing Club annexed the Champion Fours in March in opposition to Port, where enthusiasm for rowing had waned slightly in the past two seasons. The crew on this occasion was J Tait (B), J Irvine (2), A Fraser (3) and J Clouston (S), all lightweights (average weight 9st. 2lbs.) compared with Adelaide (average weight 10st. 12lbs.)
1898 – The Champion Eights race in February between Adelaide and Port was marred by a foul, which led to some decidedly strained relations between the clubs. After the incident Port crossed the line first, but the protest of J Milne, the Adelaide Captain, was upheld and the Umpire, Mr Bayly, ordered a re-row later. This race marked the beginning of the career of Charles Lawton who rowed Bow, with W Walker (2), J Irvine (3), W Abernethy (4), K McKenzie (5), GT Wooldridge (6), AB Cornell (7), J Clouston (S) and C Sweeney (Cox). Due to illness in the crew, Port was unable to contest a re-row and the tile was awarded to Adelaide Rowing Club.
1899 – The Champion Sculls race was again contested at the New Years Day Regatta. Joe Clouston won against W Abernethy and E Canaway. PARC won the Maiden Eight race with J Irvine (B), W Almond (2), A Lewis (3), W Abernethy (4), J Walker (5), G Shand (6), C Lawton (7), W Wooldridge (S), H Jenkins (Cox) from Mercantile.
Port won its first Champion Eight title early in March in a race against Mercantile and Adelaide, who used a boat presented to St Peters College by Cambridge University. The Port crew, coached by R Morrow, comprised J Irvine (B), D Brock (2), K McKenzie (3), W Abernethy (4), JW Walker (5), W Walker (6), C Lawton (7), J Clouston (S) and E Allen (Cox). Within 100 yards from the finish Mercantile were leading but a burst from Port saw them surge to win by eight feet. Clouston subsequently collapsed twice and required medical attention.
1900 to 1924
This period marked the development of Charlie Lawton who had begun to row in 1898. Within one year he owed at No. 7 behind Clouston to win Champion Eights in 18999, 1900 and 1904. He became Stroke in 1905 when Clouston retired and then, under his mentor’s guidance, stroked the winning Champion Eights from 1907 to 1909 and Champion Fours in 1907 and 1909. Charlie played the leading role in the very difficult period after World War 1 getting the Club re-established. He was Captain in 1923 and 1924 and Coach in 1926.
1900 – The Port eight made it two in a row when it raced Adelaide and Mercantile for Champion Eights in March. The crew of JL Irvine (B), W Plaisted (2), K McKenzie (3), JH Walker (4), J McKenzie (5), WB Walker (6), CT Lawton (7), JH Clouston (S) and W Sweeney (Cox) was again coached by Robert Morrow. Port won by twenty lengths with Mercantile second in a time of 18 minutes 6 seconds. Jack Playfair officiated as Starter. Port was also successful in the Champion Fours later in March when it raced against Adelaide and Mercantile. The crew was also coached by R Morrow. Joe Clouston was described as “a prince of strokes and a man who commands the entire respect and esteem of his comrades”. The pre-start manoeuvring was marked by the defiance of Clouston towards the Umpire, JJ Sharp and Starter, J Playfair. The SA Rowing Association had recently discussed a near collision in the Champion Eights race and decided, without any stipulation as to weather conditions, that the Champion Fours race should be rowed in midstream so as to avoid any possibility of a foul. The resolution was communicated to the Starter and Umpire. Mr Sharp signalled to the crews, who were close inshore, to paddle into the midstream. “I won’t!” was the laconic reply from Clouston. The Mercantile and Adelaide strokes were just as gratuitous to the Umpire. Mr Playfair intimated he would not start until he crews obeyed orders. The contestants were adamant and point-blank refused to move. Playfair’s dilemma was not eased by SA Rowing Association Secretary Healy saying to him “You have your instructions, carry them out!” The race was started where the crews had assembled. After Port drew ahead, Mercantile fouled Adelaide and caused a slight delay. Port went on to win by twelve lengths in 22 minutes 41 seconds. The crew were JL Irvine (B), WB Walker (2), CT Lawton (3), JH Clouston (S) and W Sweeney (Cox).
1901 – Only two crews, Port and Mercantile, contested the Champion Eights race in March. The Port crew comprised, JL Irvine (B), GT Wooldridge (2), JL Playfair (3), JH Walker (4), J McKenzie (5), W Abernethy (6), WB Walker (7), JH Clouston (S), and W Sweeney (Cox). Port had taken a one length lead at the old No. 3 Beacon, increased it to six lengths at Ocean Steamer’s Wharf and completed the course in 17 minutes 467 seconds. Port continued that success to register the double-double (both championships in successive years) when they raced Mercantile and Adelaide in the Champion Fours over two and a quarter miles.
The crew comprised JL Irvine (B), W Abernethy (2), WB Walker (3), JH Clouston (S) and A Lawton (Cox). Port gained a lead early and kept it over the course to eventually win by four lengths from Mercantile in 14 minutes 45 seconds, after Adelaide was inconvenienced by a pleasure craft.
1902 – Adelaide gained revenge by defeating Port and Mercantile in Champion Eights in March. Clouston raised a question before the start about Mercantile rowing a man, who had not been nominated (Fahey), but the enquiry was dismissed by Starter, J Playfair. At the first start Port had gained a substantial lead when Mercantile fouled Adelaide before 100 yards had been traversed. Port were recalled and the race was eventually re-started.
At the old Silt Works, Mercantile swamped. By that time Port were well ahead but had shipped so much water they had to go ashore to empty their boat. Adelaide then took the lead and won by a length and a half in 19 minutes 52 seconds. The Port crew was WB Walker (B), GW Wooldridge (2), JL Playfair (3), W Almond (4), J McKenzie (5), JH Walker (6), CT Lawton (7), JH Clouston (S) and A Lawton (Cox). PARC lodged a protest against the manner in which the race was conducted. The SA Rowing Association regretted the publicity given to the issue by Port and decided to publish the rules governing the umpire’s decision. Recall procedures were also clarified. Adelaide repeated their success in Champion Fours later in March against Port and Mercantile. Adelaide jumped away at the start and at Long’s Point they were a length ahead. Port gained to be on level terms at Dunn’s Mill, but then lapsed as Adelaide spurted to win by three quarters of a length in 12 minutes 29 seconds. Joe Clouston was selected as Stroke for the SA crew in the Interstate Eights race at Port Adelaide on May 10. Eventually four PARC members were included in the SA crew. The other three were JH Walker, CT Lawton and J Sweeney. The race proved to be one of the best since the contests began 26 years previously. WA, NSW, Victoria, Queensland and SA started. Victoria won from SA by three quarters of a length. Queensland were third.
1903 – Adelaide retained the shield for Champion Eights in March from Port and Mercantile. The local crew was WB Walker (B), H McArthur (2), WA Almond (3), WJ McArthur (4), JH Walker (5), L Corston (6), CT Lawton (7), JH Clouston (S) and C Sweeney (Cox). Port made a good race of it. At Snowden’s Beach, Adelaide led by half a length but a Luff Point they had extended it to one length and at No. 1 Quay to two and a half lengths. The cheering from spectators afloat and ashore was deafening. Adelaide won in 18 minutes 58 seconds. Adelaide also repeated Port’s feat in winning a double-double when they annexed the Champion Fours later in March from Port in a two crew race. Port comprised L Corston (B), WJ McArthur (2), CT Lawton (3), JH Clouston (S) and A Lawton (Cox). At Luff Point, Adelaide led by a length and by two lengths at No. 1 Quay, to finally win by five lengths in 15 minutes 45 seconds.
1904 – It was Port’s turn to win Champion Eights again in February from Adelaide and University even though they had to change their crew in the last week of preparation. The time taken was 19 minutes 43 seconds. The crew was L Playfair (B), S McArthur, (2), W Almond (3), V Bishop (4), JH Walker (5), A Connolly (6), CT Lawton (7), JH Clouston (S) and W Smith (Cox).
1905 – The Champion Eight race in February marked the first appearance of the Torrens Rowing Club in the event, but unfortunately Port was not represented. Adelaide and University also raced. The contest was very even to Luff Point when Adelaide led Torrens’ by two lengths. The race ended in 18 minutes 14 seconds in the same order, margin (one and a half lengths) and University third (five lengths) arrears. Torrens were the only opponents for Adelaide in the Champion Fours in March. Torrens held a good lead of one and a half lengths at Luff point but Adelaide unleashed a wonderful effort. Despite the Torrens stroke, Fahey, showing obvious signs of distress, Adelaide could not draw level until No. 1 Quay was reached where Fahey collapsed. He had rowed himself to a standstill. Adelaide continued to lead for the remaining 500 yards. Fahey was unconscious when he reached the Birkenhead shore and had to be attended by Dr P Bollen, after which he was taken to the Sandwell home of Mr A Peterson. Fahey attributed his condition to influenza.
1906 – University, Adelaide, Torrens and Port lined up for the Champion Eights in March. Ports crew comprised one senior, five maiden and two junior oarsmen, namely, JA Davey (B), WG Wigg (2), FR Peterson (3), GA Lawton (4), GE Mart (5), TH Petersen (6), Unknown (7), CT Lawton (S) and CG Heritage (Cox). The Port boat rudder broke twice which hampered their chances and caused them to foul Torrens, who sank soon afterwards. Port also swamped suddenly whilst proceeding without a rudder. At Snowden’s Beach, Adelaide led comfortably by twelve lengths. Both Port and University continued to race after emptying their boats. Adelaide won in 22 minutes 7 seconds from University and Port. A fortnight later Port Adelaide defeated Adelaide and Torrens in the Champion Fours race in 15 minutes 28 seconds. The race was again staged in rough conditions over a little more than two miles from the Torpedo Station to the end of Commercial Wharf. Torrens led early but at Luff Point, Port Adelaide led by four lengths which was increased to twelve lengths at the Freezing Works. The PARC crew was FR Petersen (B), GA Lawton (2), WG Wigg (3), CT Lawton (S) and CG Heritage (Cox).
1907 – Port won the Champion Eights in record time in March from Mercantile, Torrens and Adelaide. The first mile was reached in 4 minutes 42 seconds, the Torpedo Station in 6 minutes 57 seconds, White’s Point in 9 minutes 5 seconds and Luff Point 12 minutes 4 seconds. Port eventually won by ten lengths ahead of Torrens, Mercantile and Adelaide in 17 minutes 27 seconds. The Port crew was FR Petersen (B), CW Oswald (2), TH Petersen (3), GA Lawton (4), WG Wigg (5), WR Brown (6), JE Osborne (7), CT Lawton (S) and CG Heritage (Cox). Port scored a double by taking the Champion Fours also in March with the crew of FR Petersen (B), GA Lawton (2), WG Wigg (3), CT Lawton (S) and CG Heritage (Cox). Ports were the “dark horses” for it was not anticipated that the lightest crew would win from Mercantile and Torrens. The absence of Adelaide was criticised, it being the strongest club numerically and in other respects. The Port cox, Heritage, was complimented on steering a “beautiful” course. The winning margin was three and a half lengths from Torrens in 13 minutes 8 seconds.
1908 – Port scored a very narrow victory in the Champion Eights in March against Torrens, Mercantile and University. Adelaide’s absence was again noted. Port were a length clear from Mercantile after a hard race to the Government Depot, but from that point to the finish both crews rowed a dogged race. Port just lasted to win by two feet in 18 minutes 57 seconds. Port had been left at the start and rowed a stern chased for the first mile. WS Webb, the Port cox, had steered an excellent course. The crew was FR Petersen (B), JA Begg (2), TH Petersen (3), GA Lawton (4), WG Wigg (5), AA Connolly (6), JE Osborne (7), CT Lawton (S) and WS Webb (Cox).
1909 – An Aquatic Carnival held at Port Adelaide on New Year’s Day was marked with a speech by Robert Cruickshank reminiscing about his rowing career and the Port Adelaide Regatta’s of the past. Only Mercantile and Port nominated for Champion Fours in January. After being beaten in 1908 in an old boat, Port had the advantage of a new shell for the race, which was evenly fought throughout. The winning margin for Port was only one length and the time was 15 minutes 54 seconds.
The crew was TH Petersen (B), GA Lawton (2), WG Wigg (3), CT Lawton (S) and WS Webb (Cox). The new four was christened by Mrs EW Morris on 30th January. It was named the “Piyawola” (A Nest) and had been built by Edwards, Melbourne, for forty six pounds. Adelaide, Port, University and Mercantile competed for the Champion Eights in March. Mercantile began very quickly and Port started slowly. After the first eight minutes Mercantile had fallen behind and the race developed evenly between the other clubs.
At Luff Point, Adelaide led University but soon after an Adelaide steering error and a burst by Port saw them take the lead. At the Freezing Depot, Port were only a few feet ahead of University, but they went on to win by one and a quarter lengths in 17 minutes 50 seconds. Coxswain WS Webb had steered another excellent course. The crew was FR Petersen (B), CW Oswald (2), TH Petersen (3), WG Wigg (4), GA Lawton (5), AA Connolly (6), JE Osborne (7), CT Lawton (S) and WS Webb (Cox). Port promoted a Champion Junior Eight race in March to give more encouragement to junior oarsmen in eight oared racing. Mercantile, Torrens, University and Port nominated. The course was one and a half miles starting from the False Arm to Cruickshank’s Corner. There were mishaps when Mercantile broke an oar and their stroke lost his seat. Torrens swamped near the half way mark. Port won by two and a half lengths with the crew of R Tobin (B), S Gillespie (2), A Slade (3), L Dalziel (4), R Needles (5), J Reid (6), W Nankervis (7), N McLeod (S) and L Bastian (Cox).
1910 – Adelaide, Mercantile and Port again contested Champion Junior Eights in February. The race was a “clinker” from start to finish with Mercantile making the pace from the beginning to take a two length lead at the Government Produce Depot. University eventually won by half a canvas from Mercantile, Adelaide and Port. The time was 9 minutes 42 seconds. Mercantile won the Champion Fours in February by six lengths from Port Pirie and Port Adelaide. Adelaide sank at White’s Point and Torrens at Snowden’s Beach. Time was 14 minutes 45 seconds. Port Pirie were commended on their performance in their first entry in the race.
1911– Rough weather turned the February Champion Eights race into a fiasco when University, Port, Mercantile and Adelaide started. Port took an early lead and sought the shelter of the Birkenhead shore. University had to stop and Mercantile sank. The Adelaide had to empty their boat. Port had proceeded steadily and crossed the line after 22 minutes 21 seconds. The crew was J Begg (B), S Gillespie (2), N McLeod (3), CW Oswald (4), TH Petersen (5), FA Easton (6), JE Osborne (7), WG Wigg (S) and WS Webb (Cox) with Rev. F Wilkinson (Coach). Mercantile won the Champion Fours in March by one and a half lengths from Port Pirie, Port Adelaide, Adelaide and Torrens in 13 minutes 10 seconds. Port Pirie were again commended on their good performance.
1912 – Torrens gained their first success in Champion Eights in February in opposition to Mercantile and Port. At Copper Ore Point, Torrens were half a length ahead of Port. Mercantile sank at Luff Point and Port appeared to be in danger of doing likewise. Torrens won in capital style by four lengths in 18 minutes 47 seconds. In March The Champion Fours and Champion Junior Eights races were rowed on Monday evening after rough weather forced postponement on Saturday. In the Junior Eights, Mercantile, University, Adelaide, Torrens and Port started. Mercantile won by three lengths from Torrens, University, Adelaide and Port in 12 minutes 15 seconds. The Champion Fours race attracted crews from Murray Bridge, Port Pirie, Torrens, Mercantile and Port Adelaide. Torrens won by two lengths from Port Adelaide, Port Pirie, Mercantile and Murray Bridge. The time was 12 minutes 35 seconds.
Champion Fours was held again in December and this marked the beginning of dominance by the Murray Bridge Rowing Club. Contestants were Adelaide, University, Torrens, Port, Mercantile and Murray Bridge. At the False Arm, Murray Bridge were rating 40 and went on to win in the record time of 12 minutes from Mercantile, Torrens, Port, University and Adelaide. Their crew was B Jaensch (B), A Sladden (2), E Joyce (3), W Sladden (S) and S Harris (Cox).
1913 – Murray Bridge was favoured to win the Champion Eights in February and they did not disappoint their supporters. They were opposed by Adelaide, Torrens, Mercantile and Port Adelaide, and began rating at 40 in their new boat, “GN Macquarie” and completed the course in 16 minutes 48 seconds despite carrying their Coach, Mr E Higgs (12 st.), as cox when he was forced to replace the nominated coxswains. Port finished second from Adelaide, Torrens and Mercantile.
In March the Champion Junior Eight race was won by Adelaide from Torrens, University and Port in the time of 11 minutes and 8 seconds. The State selector/coach Mr AJ Grayson chose a composite crew for the coming interstate eight race. Murray Bridge oarsmen were not included as they had not nominated on the grounds that their employment prevented them remaining in the city to train. Next the stroke of the chosen crew and selector resigned. Mr A Nicholls was deputed to choose another crew. After winning Champion Fours and Eights so decisively Murray Bridge asked the SA Rowing Association to allow them to row a test race against the chosen crew. The application was granted whereupon the selected oarsmen resigned.
In April, Port Adelaide then offered to make a race for Murray Bridge who had lost two of their men after charges of professionalism. In the trial race Port could not match their opponents, and before half a mile was covered, the result was a foregone conclusion and Murray Bridge continued to win by 300 yards in 17 minutes and 55 seconds. The crowd cheered Murray Bridge as no other crew had been cheered on the Port River. Mr Nicholls promptly appointed Murray Bridge to represent the State. Later in April, Murray Bridge faced NSW, Tasmania, Western Australia, Queensland and Victoria on the Port River. On race day the weather was bad. Postponement could not be considered because of the distance WA and Qld had travelled, but the start was delayed until 5.30pm. Joe Clouston was Starter and despite his prior warning, WA were badly inconvenienced at the start. Murray Bridge exploded the theory that they would need smooth water. After one and a half miles they were two lengths ahead. Queensland sank near the North Arm and NSW abandoned the race at Snowden’s Beach, then Victoria swamped. WA had to go ashore to empty. The SA coxswain, RG Woodhead, who had the foresight to take a bailer, which he used incessantly from the first half mile, took his boat to the eastern side of the river to more sheltered water. In semi-darkness Murray Bridge finished stroking at 39 to win by 200 yards from Tasmania who sank after crossing the line. WA had continued to race and were the third and only other crew to finish. The winning time was 17 minutes 1 second. The Murray Bridge crew was GH Oliver (B), WH Pfeiffer (2), ED Thomas (3), AV Scott (4), FA Atkinson (5), AB Sladden (6), H Joyce (7), WM Sladden (S), RG Woodhead (Cox) and EE Higgs (Coach).
1914 – In March, Champion Fours and Champion Junior Eights were raced on the same day. Mercantile, University, Adelaide, Mannum, Port and Torrens contested the Junior Eights which Mercantile won after fouling Torrens, from University, Torrens, Port, Mannum and Adelaide in 10 minutes 25 seconds. Murray Bridge won the Champion Fours in a decisive manner with Torrens their only opponent.
They began rating at 40 and Torrens kept level at 38. At Luff Point the rating had dropped to 32. With a clean beautiful swing Murray Bridge won by over 200 yards in 13 minutes 27 seconds.
The Great War 1914-1918 embroiled the British Empire from 4th August and the beginning of recruitment in Australia soon had a noticeable effect o rowing in South Australia, although some club activities continued and Henley on Torrens was convened late in 1914. Harry Blair Everett was probably the first member of the Port club to enlist in the A.I.F. on 27 August 1914.
His regimental number was 577 and he embarked for the Middle East on 20 October 1914 as a member of the Australian Army Ordnance Corps. He landed at Gallipoli in August 1915 and remained there until 30 September 1915. He then served in Egypt until September 1917 when he was sent to France where he remained until the end of the war. He was discharged medically unfit on 3 April 1919. Harry resumed his interest in rowing but did not compete actively again. His health had been undermined by his war service and he died prematurely around 1933, aged 45 years. Joe Clouston was Mayor of Port Adelaide from 1914 to 1918.
1920 – The SARA held a regatta on the Port River in March. Murray Bridge was the only entrant for Champion Fours. The Junior Eights title was contested by Commonwealth, Torrens and Adelaide. Commonwealth were leading after the first mile when Torrens swamped and their boat broke in halves. Commonwealth continued to win easily from Adelaide in 14 minutes 31 seconds.
1921 – The Champion Eights race was held in March between Murray Bridge, Commonwealth and Port. Murray Bridge outclassed the challengers and were said to appear capable of holding their own anywhere in the Commonwealth. They won by ten lengths from Commonwealth in 16 minutes 22 seconds. The Port crew comprised of H Petersen (B), HT Fyfe (2), L Bennetts (3) FA Hill (4), TH Petersen (5), GA Harrison (6), WJ Rickwood (7), CT Lawton (S) and WS Webb (Cox).
Champion Fours and Champion Junior Eights races were staged on the same day in December. There were four entries for Champion Fours, Murray Bridge, Adelaide, Port and Torrens. The Murray Bridge crew used a noticeably lower rating than in their earlier races. Adelaide stopped rowing at the False Arm. Murray Bridge won from Torrens by six lengths in 14 minutes 19 seconds. Five crews, Torrens, Port, Mannum, Port Pirie and Adelaide, lined up for the Champion Junior Eights. Mannum won by two lengths from Port Pirie, Torrens, Adelaide and Port Adelaide in 12 minutes and 40 seconds.
1922 – In March, Adelaide and Torrens fours rowed for the Le Hunte Cup for junior oarsmen. A Port crew of J Hossack (B), H Ricketts (2), R Wiggins (3), L Sperber (S) and R Murch (Cox) raced against Adelaide, Torrens and Commonwealth in Maiden Fours, but they finished last. Murray Bridge won the Champion Eights on the same day from Commonwealth and Adelaide by eight lengths. The first mile was completed in 4 minutes 10 seconds.
Members of sporting circles in Port Adelaide were saddened by the sudden death of Robert Cruickshank on 23rd March, which removed from public life a man well known, greatly esteemed and one of the most capable lawyers of the Port Adelaide district. In addition to rowing, Robert had been associated with yachting, football and horse racing. He was Mayor of St. Peters in 1906, and from 1908 to 1910. He was regarded at Port Adelaide as the “father of amateur rowing”.
Champion Fours and Champion Junior Eights were raced on the same day in November. Murray Bridge won the Champion Fours for the seventh year in succession from the only opposition, Torrens, in difficult head wind conditions. The margin was six lengths and the time was 14 minutes 42 seconds. A better field of five entrants contested the Champion Junior Eight race. Adelaide, University, Commonwealth, Port Adelaide and Port Pirie started. Torrens had entered but withdrew. The Port Adelaide crew had to abandon their boat when the forward canvas stove in. Port Pirie won from Commonwealth, University and Adelaide. There were no Port Adelaide members among the regatta officials which demonstrated the difficulties being experienced in re-establishing the Club after the Great War.
1923 – At the SA Rowing Association regatta in February, Port Adelaide were defeated in the Maiden Fours by Torrens from Adelaide and Commonwealth, but won the Le Hunte Cup for Junior Fours, by six lengths from Commonwealth, University and Adelaide in 6 minutes 40 seconds. Unfortunately crew details are not available. Murray Bridge received only one challenge for Champion Eights, from Adelaide. The country men made their city opponents appear the veriest novices and won by more than a quarter of a mile to record their ninth successive win. Adelaide had to beach and empty their boat but they completed the course.
At the Annual General Meeting in September, at which Harry Everett presided, it was resolved that, in future, the Club be called the Port Adelaide Rowing Club instead of the Port Adelaide Amateur Rowing Club. Dr LO Betts became Patron.
The SA Rowing Association conducted another regatta in November for Champion Fours, Champion Junior Eights, Forrester Fours and Tub Slides in unfavourable weather conditions. Port entered two crews in the maiden Tubs against Adelaide and University. Adelaide won with Port No. 1 second. The crew was H Boyes (B), A Robinson (2), G Dunstan (3), B Walker (S) and G Salkeld (Cox). Due to the illness of WH Pfeiffer, Murray Bridge had to withdraw from the Champion Fours race. Mannum and Port contested the event, won by the former by three lengths in 15 minutes 34 seconds. The Port crew were H Ricketts (B), R Remphrey (2), F Hasemar (3), A Minns (S) and C Turner (Cox). Champion Junior Eights was rowed downstream from Commercial Wharf by six contestants, Torrens, Commonwealth, Berri, Mannum, University and Port. At the three quarter mile mark Berri had gained the lead which was lost after a couple of “crabs”. University took the lead to win from Berri, Adelaide, Torrens, Mannum, Port and Commonwealth in 15 minutes 58 seconds. Harry Everett officiated as a Judge. The Forrester Fours was won by Adelaide from University, Port and Torrens by three lengths in 8 minutes 10 seconds. The Port crew was AJ Parham (B), J Hartley (2), A Monte (3), R Walker (S) and C Turner (Cox).
1924 – Bad weather was encountered again when the SA Rowing Association staged a regatta in February for Maiden Tub Slides, Le Hunte Cup, Maiden Clinker Fours and Champion Eights. Port had only two crews racing in the Tub and Clinker Fours but neither was successful. The Champion Eights was won by Mannum from Murray Bridge, Port Pirie and University by one length in 18 minutes 42 seconds. Mannum and Port Pirie rowed in boats borrowed from University and Adelaide respectively. Mannum took the lead at the half mile, and thereafter, it was a race between the two River Murray crews.
The Olympic Test Race was held at the Port in March when Murray Bridge, representing SA, faced Western Australia, Tasmania and Victoria in rough weather, but when conditions had not improved by 5pm, it was decided to postpone the race until Sunday morning. The move was successful and calmer water was available. Tasmania and Victoria began poorly. Murray Bridge and WA jumped away together. At the half way mark a WA spurt gave them a half length lead. WA were using a short, sharp style (42) against the Murray Bridge long, steady pull (35). Over the last quarter mile WA and Murray Bridge alternately gained slight advantages and Victoria had improved to fight out a splendid finish. With 100 yards to go Murray Bridge made a final effort to win by a canvas from WA with Victoria only a canvas behind in third place. The course was only one and a quarter miles and the time recorded was 6 minutes 9.3 seconds an Australian record but 4.3 seconds slower than the world record. The Murray Bridge crew was HE Graetz (B), ED Thomas (2), WE Jarvis (3), AV Scott (4), T Taueber (5), WH Pfeiffer (6), FM Cummings (7), WM Sladden (S), RA Cummings (Cox) and EE Higgs (Coach). In April the SA Rowing Association staged a regatta for Champion Junior Eights, Junior Fours, maiden Fours and Champion Sculls over two and a half miles. Port boated an eight against Berri for the Junior Eight championship, but they were beaten by Berri in 13 minutes.
Two scullers, RL Naylor, University, and H Ricketts, PARC, competed for the Sculls title. Naylor outclassed his opponent from the start and won by 150 yards. Charlie Lawton, Weight Steward, was the only Port member officiating. The King’s Cup Race was held at Port Adelaide towards the end of April. Mannum represented SA after a test race against the second Murray Bridge eight and they faced WA, NSW, Queensland, Tasmania and Victoria. Their crew comprised of CF Kretschmer (B), T Tabe (2), A Kretschmer (3), A Elix (4), A Tabe (5), JF Ledo (6), AA Loxton (7), A Hoffman (S), IA Hamilton (Cox) and AE Schuetze (Coach).
The conditions for the race were ideal, but unfortunately for Tasmania their craft was accidently holed in the boatshed and then swamped as it was towed to the start. All crews rowed well early with high ratings, but at the half mile SA had dropped down to 32. Queensland, who rowed a long powerful stroke with a good finish, suggested they were about to win their first interstate eight race in 33 years. Victoria had to stop temporarily, with rigger trouble, which ruined their chances after which their boat was swamped by passing launches. Over the last two miles the race was the best ever seen on the Port River. Queensland was only headed twice by NSW and SA, who had dropped down to 29, and spurted at Luff Point. It was a great dash by the Mannum crew, who were exceeding all local expectations, and rowing a splendid stroke with great strength. Queensland answered every challenge and won from NSW by a canvas with SA three quarters of a length away, third.
SA Ladies (Barcarolle Club) won the Australian Ladies’ Four Oared Championship from Victoria and WA. (Refer to Women Rowers).
In August another old Port Adelaide rowing identity was lost when John Playfair, 77, passed away at Wolverton Hospital, Largs Bay. He was interred at the Cheltenham Cemetery but his grave has been resumed in recent years.
At a SA Rowing Association regatta in November the good news for oarsmen was that the improved boat shed facilities at Jenkins Street, Birkenhead, were nearing completion. (Refer to Colours, Courses and Clubhouses).
The Port club was beginning to gain strength and entered crews in four events at the regatta, which programmed Champion Fours, Junior Eights, Forrester Fours and Maiden Tub Slides.
In the Champion Fours, Mannum and Port were the only starters. Port led to Snowden’s Beach, but at Ocean Steamers’ Wharf, Mannum took the lead and were ahead by one length at No. 2 Quay. Mannum won by two and a half lengths after a strenuously fought race in 14 minutes 41 seconds. The Port crew was R Remphrey (B), B Walker (2), H Wiebricht (3), A Minns (S) and C Turner (Cox).
The Port Maiden Tub Slide crew of AJ Hartley (B), A Hallett (2), Reid (3), WS Murch (S) and G Salkeld (Cox) lost to Adelaide and Mannum. The margins were a length and a length.
The Junior Eight race, one mile, attracted Torrens, University, Adelaide and Port. There was a recall when University No.7 oar broke. Adelaide and University were early leaders after the re-start. At the Produce Depot, University led Adelaide by a canvas. Torrens, on the Birkenhead side, had gained and at No. 2 Quay they were leading, and eventually won by two and a half lengths in 6 minutes 30 seconds from University, Adelaide and Port, whose crew was Johns (B), Campbell (2), Dunstan (3), Williamson (4), Halliday (5), Boyes (6), Dunstan (7) and Walker (S).
In the Forrester Fours there were was a delay to repair a Port poppet, then after the start the bow seat runner broke and the crew, Halliday (B), Boyes (2), Dunstan (3) and Walker (S) had to withdraw.
In mid December Mrs JH Clouston christened the new eight “LO Betts” after the Club Patron whose generosity was largely responsible for the acquisition of the boat. The view was expressed that, in recent times, the Club had passed through troubled times, but its future now seemed bright.
In April the people of Port Adelaide were shocked when a disaster occurred after a tremendous explosion on board the ship “City of Singapore”. On Saturday 26th April the most serious shipping fire of SA’s chief seaport, and one of the worst that had occurred in the Commonwealth, startled the people of Port Adelaide on Saturday evening and caused many a resident a night of wakeful apprehension. The Steamer, “City of Singapore”, a fine freighter of about 9000 tons gross, was lying at No.2 Quay, in a basin curiously known as Tragedy Dock, discharging and loading cargo, when a fire started in No. 4 hold, abaft the engine room. The Fire Brigade was summoned, and a report was shortly before 11pm that the fire had been extinguished. Almost immediately afterwards a terrific explosion, which shook the buildings even in the distant suburbs east of the city, blew out part of the deck and upper works, and scattered firemen, police and spectators in all directions. One fireman was killed, two others were presumably killed and hurled into the water, and others, as well as members of the ship’s crew were more or less seriously injured.
Wonderful heroism was displayed by many firemen, police, civilians and members of the ship’s company. A policeman, three civilians and the ship’s Chief Officer descended into the inferno of the fire below decks in response to cries for help from one of the ship’s engineers, who had been pinned in the wreckage and, snatching him from his perilous position a few feet from the flames, carried him to shore.
The firemen who lost their lives were, A Greenman, GJA Anderson and J Hickey. The latter, who were apparently Port Adelaide men, are remembered in the Cheltenham Cemetery, where a fine monument subscribed by the citizens perpetuates their lives.
The Port Authority has never encouraged the sue of the name Tragedy Dock, but it is a term well known to local people and old oarsmen who frequently began their final spurt to the finish line from the northern side of the dock.
1925 to 1929
In this period, when the Great Depression had a dire effects on all aspects of communal life, the efforts of the Salkeld family generated a good deal in setting the rowing side of the club on the way to success. They lived close to the rowing boat sheds in Birkenhead. Bill (Snr.) became Coach, sons, Kingsley, Bill (Jnr.) and George became oarsmen and Clarrie assisted as Trainer. In addition, three daughters helped when catering assistance was required on regatta days. William Rupert became Stroke of the Club’s best eight to win the Championship in 1928 and 1929 and Fours in 1928. He overshadowed, to some extent, his brother King, who was a very competent oarsman in other eights. George had numerous successes as Coxswain and then graduated to the oar in lightweight crews.
1925 – The Champion Eights race was held in February with Commonwealth, Torrens, Murray Bridge, Port and Mannum competing. Murray Bridge had six members of their Olympic crew available. Mannum and Murray Bridge made the best starts. By the time they reached the wharves, Murray Bridge were five lengths ahead, with Torrens and Mannum battling for second place and Port had dropped to the rear. Along the wharves Murray Bridge forged ahead and extended their lead by another five lengths to cross the finish line in 18 minutes 33 seconds from Torrens and Commonwealth. As a result Murray Bridge was selected to represent SA again in the King’s Cup race. Champion Sculls was a row over for H Ricketts, now with the Commonwealth club. Port had a crew in Maiden Clinker Fours which was won by Murray Bridge from Torrens A, Adelaide and Port. Renmark won the Le Hunte Cup from Murray Bridge, Adelaide and Torrens.
In the SA Rowing Association Autumn regatta Adelaide won the Maiden Eight race from St. Peters College and Port. They also won the Maiden Clinker Fours from Port and Torrens. The Tub Fours race was won by Berri after University were disqualified. The Champion Junior Eights race brought six starters, Adelaide, Mannum, Renmark, Berri, Torrens and University for the Marcus Cup presented by Mr JP Marcus for annual competition. Collisions occurred near the Grid after which the Torrens stroke, LA Barlow, collapsed and the crew was forced to retire. Renmark, Mannum and Berri were rowing a great race. Some onlookers thought the three boats had finished level, but the verdict was for Berri, by half a canvas, from Renmark with a similar distance to Mannum in 10 minutes 50 seconds, the fastest time since 1914. Port had a victory in the Lightweight Maiden Fours with AJ Hartley (B), A Hallett (2), RH Reid (3), A Monte (S) and G Salkeld (Cox). Mannum won the Fixed Tub Fours race from Adelaide despite a broken seat.
In November the SA Rowing Association held the Opening Regatta for the new season at Port Adelaide. Torrens were the only entrant for Champion Fours and rowed over the course. Seven crews lined up for Forrester Fours, Port Adelaide A and B, Adelaide A and B, University, Torrens and Murray Bridge. The race was hard fought with the course upstream against the wind. Port won with the crew of W Salkeld (B), J Hartley (2), J Deacon (3), A Hallett (S) and G Salkeld (Cox).
The Junior Eight race was won by Adelaide from University, Mercantile and Torrens. Charlie Lawton and WA Salkeld were Judges.
1926 – This was a year in which the Champion Eights race was contested twice in the same calendar year, namely, in February in the 1925/26 season and in December in the 1926/27 season. The Champion Eights regatta at the Port was held in February with Berri and Renmark entering the race for the first time. Other starters were Adelaide, Torrens and Murray Bridge. Berri were left a half a length behind at the start. Renmark first took the lead at the Torpedo Station where Adelaide fouled Murray Bridge and Berri had already retired with boat trouble. Renmark won comfortably by two lengths from Torrens and Murray Bridge. The Renmark crew (first up winners) was CW Frick (B), RT Hallahan (2), D Malcolm (3), AR Ingram (4), A Heard (5), TM Price (6), JH Price (7), KS Pank (S) and M Abell (Cox). The Le Hunte Cup was won by Mercantile from Mannum and Adelaide. The Willoughby Fours was taken by Adelaide from Mannum and Torrens. The Junior Eight race was won by Torrens from Adelaide and Port in 12 minutes 41 seconds. Port gained a win in Tub Slides with L Lehman (B), T Jelly (2), F Davey (3), C White (S) and TS Salkeld (Cox). Adelaide took the Maiden Fours race from Murray Bridge and Port.
In March the test race between a Mannum-Murray Bridge composite crew, Renmark and a Metropolitan composite crew was arranged. The country combination led all the way to win by five lengths from Metropolitan and Renmark. The crew to represent SA in Brisbane was A Pilmore (B), J Guerin (2), HW Doecke (3), AV Scott (4), D Marshall (5), L Stone (6), A Loxton (7), WH Pfeiffer (S), RA Cummings (Cox) and CF Kretschmer (Emergency).
In November Mrs AOR Tapp, Mayoress, christened the new racing four “Chas. T Lawton”, to honour the work of the loyal veteran. It was to prove a fine craft built by J Edwards and Son, Melbourne.
Rough weather intervened in the Champion eights race in December rowed downstream from Commercial Wharf to Osborne. Renmark, Mannum, Adelaide, Mercantile, Torrens and Murray Bridge nominated. Adelaide and Torrens were the first to sink. Later Murray Bridge sank towards Osborne. Mannum led Renmark and Mercantile over the line where Mercantile sank as they stopped rowing. The time was 17 minutes 29 seconds. The crew was J Hartley (B), VH Brine (2), F Davey (3), T Jelly (S) and H Kay (Cox). The Willoughby Memorial Fours was won by Adelaide from Torrens and Port A.
1927 – The Test Race for King’s Cup representation in Hobart was rowed in March on a Saturday afternoon, but because of the conditions the officials decided that the race should be re-rowed on Sunday morning.
On the Saturday Torrens, Renmark, and Mannum competed. Torrens suffered a boat defect just before the start which limited them somewhat. Mannum led at the North Arm. A tacking ketch caused the race to be stopped and re-started. Soon after, Renmark sank and Mannum were several lengths ahead. They continued and finished the course. On Sunday, Mannum did not take part. However, the selectors were unanimous that Mannum should represent SA with the crew of EA Bolto (B), A Elix (2), FD Heidrich (3), AF Petersen (4), RC McKinnon (5), PJ Treleaven (6), AA Loxton (7), A Tabe (S), H Warhurst (Cox) and AE Schultze (Coach).
Port Adelaide won the Maiden Fours from Adelaide, University, Torrens and Mercantile with L Lehmann (B), A Hallett (2), LW Goerecke (3), WR Salkeld (S) and CF Turner (Cox). Tub Slides was won by Renmark from Adelaide and Port.
SA (Mannum) finished fourth behind WA, NSW and Victoria in the King’s Cup race in Hobart after Tasmania and Queensland sank in almost impossible conditions. SA swamped on the finish line.
In December, the Champion Fours race was won by Mercantile from Renmark and Adelaide. The I’zingaris led early to be passed later by Renmark. At the Grid, Mercantile assumed the lead and went on to win by two lengths in 15 minutes 11 seconds. Their crew was WE Fitzgerald (B), KR John (2), CV Chapman (3), AV Blank (S) and R Thornton (Cox). They attributed their success to the coaching of their Captain, JJ Healy.
Port had a good day winning the remaining three races on the all four oared programme. In the Le Hunte Cup, Port A won from Port B, Adelaide and Mercantile. The crew was F Davey (B), A Cormack (2), L Goerecke (3), WR Salkeld (S) and CF Turner (Cox). Their Maiden Four crew of KA Salkeld (B), FL Brady (2), AH Burchell (3), C White (S) and H Davis (Cox) won the Willoughby Cup from Adelaide, Torrens and Mercantile. The Lightweight Maiden Fours crew of J Hallett (B), H Minchinberg (2), C Todd (3), E Lawton (S) and R Baker (Cox) defeated Torrens.
A Port Adelaide eight travelled to Melbourne to compete in the Henley on Yarra regatta in October.
1928 – Port Pirie and Port Adelaide fought a bow to bow struggle in the Champion Junior Eight race in February. Near the finish the lead was changing by six inches with each stroke. Many thought a dead heat had occurred but the Judge ruled in favour of Port Pirie. The Port Adelaide boat had taken its six inch lead behind the line. The Port Pirie crew was G Nardelli (B), WA Campbell (2), E Schulze (3), L Belcher (4), F Howard (5), E Kerntke (6), S Wilson (7), F Morphett (S) and S Campbell (Cox).
Port won the Maiden Fours with J Hallett (B), H Minchinberg (2), C Todd (3), E Lawton (S) and B Baker (Cox) from Adelaide, University and Torrens. Mercantile defeated Port in the Tub Slides.
More success came Port Adelaide way in March when the Champion Eights was won from Renmark, Port Pirie, Mannum and Mercantile by only three quarters of a length in 20 minutes 16 seconds. Port began poorly and Renmark started well, but Mercantile and Mannum were alongside them at the North Arm. Port were still a length behind at the Grid, half a length at Ocean Steamer’s Wharf and did not lead until reaching Commercial Wharf. The final margin was two lengths. The crew was F Davey (B), C White (2), K White (3), T Jelly (4), L White (5), A Hallett (6), L Goerecke (7), WR Salkeld (S) and CF Turner (Cox). They were selected to represent SA in the King’s Cup race in Sydney. Adelaide won the Maiden Fours from Port A and B and Torrens.
In the King’s Cup race in May WA won from NSW, Victoria, SA, Tasmania and Queensland.
At the end of December, Port Adelaide won the Champion Fours from the only other starter, Port Pirie. The northerners were leading by three quarters of a length at the Grid, but Port Adelaide had made up leeway at Luff Point and eventually crossed first. Both boats had shipped water in the rough conditions. The Port Adelaide crew was AJ Cormack (B), LW Goerecke (2), KS White (3), WR Salkeld (S) and B Baker (Cox).
The Willoughby Fours was annexed by Port Adelaide with WG Field (B), AE Plaisted (2), JS Plaisted (3), L White (S) and BT Bond (Cox) from Mercantile and Torrens A and B by three lengths.
1929 – Port Adelaide won the Champion Eights again from Renmark, Torrens, Murray Bridge and Mannum. There was an even start; Port led by half a length at the North Arm and by three quarter of a length at the Torpedo Station. At Ocean Steamers’ Wharf they led by three lengths and were not headed. The crew was F Davey (B), CG White (2), A Hallett (3), TJ Jelly (4), KS White (5), L White (6), L Goerecke (7), WR Salkeld (S) and CF Turner (Cox). They were again selected to represent SA in the King’s Cup in Perth in May.
The Maiden Fours was also won by Port with JS Plaisted (B), HW Minchinberg (2), J Hallett (3), E Lawton (S) and BT Bond (Cox) from Port B, Adelaide and Mercantile.
Adelaide won the Maiden Tub Slides from Mercantile, Port and Torrens.
Torrens won the Champion Junior Eights race with a crew which was to achieve a great deal of success in the future seasons, namely, TP Crookall (B), A Dally (2), K Ormston (3), A Plush (4), A Gregory (5), W Ninham (6), J Paley (7), F Footner (S) and A Masson (Cox). They won by two lengths from Mannum who were later disqualified, then Port and University. The time was 11 minutes 47 seconds.
Mercantile won the Maiden Fours from Adelaide. Port won the Lightweight Maiden Fours with D Hayes (B), A Ewart (2), G Salkeld (3), EF Lea (S) and B Baker (Cox) by two lengths from Torrens.
Torrens defeated Adelaide in the Junior Fours.
In the King’s Cup race NSW won from WA, Victoria and SA. Tasmania and Queensland did not race. Alf Plaisted rowed at No. 5 to replace K White who was injured.
1930 to 1941
In this period the Torrens Rowing Club came to the fore and began to accumulate success in the various grades of rowing, so it became difficult for Port crews to continue to notch the victories they had been enjoying. This was accentuated by the retirement of several experienced oarsmen who had been rowing through the 1920s. As a result the Committee arranged a “Learn to Row” campaign in 1931 and from that, a number of good new members was recruited. The period is also remembered for a succession of good secretaries, Harold Minchinberg 1930, 1931, Tom Butler 1932, 1933 and 1936, Peter Langdon 1934, 1935, 1937 and 1938 and Dave Croston 1939. They all had one common denominator, a love for rowing in their heart. Harold Minchinberg rowed with success as a lightweight and in Maiden Fours in Ted Lawton’s crew. Tom Butler was reared close to the rowing scene in Martin Street, Birkenhead. He rowed during the time that he performed the work of Secretary. He was an office worker in the Port area. After World War 2 he became a hotel keeper in the South East area of SA and so lost contact with the Club. Peter Langdon had attended SPSC where he probably developed his interest in rowing. He did not row competitively, but he could handle an oar in the boat. He approached his secretarial duties in his customary calm and friendly manner, cooperation with everybody was the keynote.
Dave Croston only had one year as Secretary, but he had been on the committee scene for some years as Treasurer and Asst. Secretary. He achieved a great deal in a short time. His love for all things associated with rowing was profound. He was intent upon tradition and decorum. His forte was persuasive eloquence, which enabled him to obtain support for the Club from businessman in Port Adelaide. This was also demonstrated by the manner in which he organised rowing at the RAAF air school at Ballarat during the short time he trained there.
1930 – Champion Junior Eights race had to be rowed on a Sunday morning because of bad weather the day before. Torrens won in record time from Berri and Mercantile. Carl Wightman, who later played as ruckman with PAFC, rowed at No. 5 in the Berri crew. When he moved to the city he rowed with Torrens Rowing Club. Port won the Junior Fours with F Jones (B), A Hewett (2), T Butler (3), H Minchinberg (S) and J Barr (Cox) from Torrens who also won the Tub Slides.
Six crews entered for the Champion Eights race in March which was won by Torrens from Mercantile, Murray Bridge, Mannum and University. Port did not finish due to boat trouble. The Port crew was F Davey (B), A Hallett (2), C White (3), W Taylor (4), J Jaffer (5), T Jelly (6), L Goerecke (7), W Salkeld (S) and B Baker (Cox).
Port won the Maiden Fours with W Tabor (B), L Badcock (2), H Boyes (3), E Lawton (S) and J Barr (Cox) from Adelaide in 6 minutes 45 seconds.
Torrens won the Tub Slides from Murray Bridge, Mercantile, Adelaide and Port was represented by A Ivy (B), D Carslaw (2), A Angove (3), R Bailey (S) and B Bond (Cox).
Bill Salkeld Jnr. Was made Life Member No.3 in September.
Torrens also won the Champion Fours in December from Port B, Port A, Adelaide and Port Pirie who sank on the finish line. The winning margin was one and a half lengths in 14 minutes 1 second.
Mercantile won the Junior Eights by a few feet from Adelaide.
Torrens won the Maiden Fours in very fast time, 6 minutes 34 seconds (possibly wind assisted). They also won the Maiden Eights, maiden Fours and Tub Slides.
1931 – Port were outclassed by 300 yards in a rough race against Torrens for Champion Eights in March beating into a storm an driving rain. Port led at the first mile. The King’s Cup was not raced in this year, so Torrens were denied the honour of State representation.
1932 – Ken White, PARC, defeated Joe Vardon, Adelaide, for the Champion Sculls title by four lengths in 14 minutes 22 seconds.
Murray Bridge won the Champion Junior Eights from Renmark and Torrens by five lengths in 11 minutes 29 seconds. Their crew was E Mewett (B), J Palmer (2), G Boehme (3), L Cremer (4), P Doecke (5), W Diercks (6), G Dalziel (7) and M Neumann (S). Torrens won the Maiden Fours and Tub Slides.
A fierce squally wind swept down the three mile course for the Champion Eights in March when Murray Bridge won a sensational race – the other four starters, Berri, Torrens, Port and University, all swamped. University emptied its boat and finished second nearly half a mile back. The time was 22 minutes 19 seconds.
A trial race on the following morning was won by Torrens from Murray Bridge, Berri and Port. Torrens were selected to represent SA in the King’s Cup with T Crookall (B), J Grimshaw (2), F Billinger (3), C Edwards (4), C Wightman (5), K Ormston (6), A Gregory (7), W Ninham (S) and D Earl (Cox).
1933 – Torrens run continued when they annexed the Champion Junior Eights race in February from Mannum and Adelaide by three and a half lengths in 12 minutes 52 seconds. Their crew was C Murison (B), J Connell (2), J Bollen (3), R Langman (4), A Bonell (5), A Walters (6), W McCann (7), W Treglown (S) and D Earl (Cox).
The start of the Champion eights race in March was delayed due to congestion at the Association boat house where the pontoon had sunk.
Torrens again won the right to represent SA in the King’s Cup by winning from Murray Bridge and Berri by three lengths in 16 minutes 57 seconds. They also won the Maiden Eights, Maiden Fours and Junior Fours.
1934 – Adelaide Rowing Club were the first winners of the WH Wallace Cup for Maiden Eights at the PARC regatta in November. Port won the Captains Cup for Fixed Tubs with Stott (B), Hardy (2), Hendry (3), Maddern (S) and Mott (Cox). Adelaide also won the CT Lawton Junior Eights.
The London Rowing Club sent their eight out to Australia to take part in the Centenary celebrations in Melbourne and they visited the PARC to have a training spin in the Port eight, “WH Wallace”. They subsequently won the Grand Challenge Cup at Henley on Yarra where Berri retained the Steward’s Challenge Cup.
1935 – The NSW Police eight, representing Australia, en route to the Olympic Games in Berlin, visited the PARC late in the year and went for a training spin in the Port eight. They were welcomed by JH Clouston and TK Qurban.
At the PARC regatta in November, Torrens won the Junior Eights, Maiden Eights, Senior Fours and Lightweight Fours. Renmark won the Maiden Fours and Port Adelaide the Tub Slides. Port Adelaide boated a crew in the Senior Fours stroked by Tom Jelly, who had not rowed for two seasons. It was a scratch crew, hastily put together, and they did well to run second to Torrens although they were eight lengths back.
Action began to from the Union of Old Oarsmen in South Australia. Charles Barwent, FR Forgan, and HC Martin were appointed organisers.
In December, Torrens continued to excel, winning the Champion Junior Eights, Champion Fours and Maiden Eights. Port Adelaide won the Tub Slides by a good margin and tied with Mercantile in the Maiden Fours with the crew of F Woolman (B), D Croston (2), R Hardy (3), W Wallace (S) and K Melano (Cox). The Tub crew was E Finch (B), A Summerton (2), E Yates (3), J Maddern (S) and R Doodie (Cox).
1936 – Torrens won the Champion Eights and Maiden Eights in February from Berri and Adelaide by six lengths in 18 minutes 7 seconds. Their crew was J Rowe (B), R Carter (2), R Goldsworthy (3), R Langman (4), O Croker (5), M Richardson (6), W McCann (7), A Gregory (S) and D Earl (Cox). Port Adelaide raced in the Maiden Eights and led Torrens most of the way, but were beaten at the finish by one length.
In December, Torrens easily won the Champion Fours from Adelaide, Berri and Mercantile by four lengths. Their crew was J Rowe (B), F Ferris (2), W McCann (3), K Ormston (S) and J Sprod (Cox). They also won the Junior Eights and Junior-Senior Fours races.
1937 – Torrens won the Champion Eights for the third year in succession in February opposed by Berri and Mercantile to gain the title in their new eight, “Deb Earl”. Berri were three lengths behind in 16 minutes 52 seconds. The winning crew was J Rowe (B), R Langman (2), K Ninnis (3), K Ormston (4), O Croker (5), M Richardson (6), W McCann (7), A Gregory (S) and D Earl (Cox). Adelaide won the Maiden Fours and Maiden Eights. Port Adelaide won the Tub Slides with A Glover (B), T Morris (2), D Croston (3), A Davey (S) and R Forbes (Cox).
South Australia won the Kings Cup at Murray Bridge in April for the first time for fourteen years. EF Yates, in the No. 2 seat, was a PARC member.
Berri surprised in the Champion Fours race by inflicting Torrens with their first defeat in the race for seven years, allowing for Torrens non-entry in 1934 when Berri also won. Berri’s crew was R Hill (B), F Seekamp (2), S Wilson (3), J Jungfer (S) and S Harding (Cox). Prince Alfred College with two crews in the Maiden Eight race won from Port Pirie, Mercantile, Torrens and Adelaide. Adelaide won the Junior-Senior Fours and Junior Fours.
1938 – Champion Junior Eights was won in convincing fashion by Port Pirie in March from Mercantile, Adelaide and Prince Alfred College by eight lengths in 13 minutes 10 seconds. Their crew was J Phelan (B), E Connolly (2), B Baker (3), D Gray (4), W Jones (5), W Harmer (6), C Harmer (7), S Fitzgerald (S) and S Campbell (Cox).
Murray Bridge won the Lightweight Fours and Mercantile the Maiden Fours. Port Adelaide won the Tub Slides with J Thomas (B), J Doyle (2), C Foster (3), D Smith (S) and R Forbes (Cox). Bob Ninham won the Champion Sculls from A Kunoth and R Hill.
At the PARC regatta in November, Port Pirie won the Senior Eights from Adelaide and Mercantile. They also won the Everett Memorial Cup for Maiden Fours. In Tub Slides, Port A of J LeLeu (B), W Weaver (2), M Coveney (3), S Brooks (S) and C Davis (Cox) won from Port B (no names), Mannum A & B, Tailem Bend, Adelaide, Murray Bridge and Mercantile. Port Adelaide also won the Lightweight Fours with J Thomas (B), F Woolman (2), C Foster (3), J Doyle (S) and D Martin (Cox).
In the Champion Fours in December, Port Pirie picked up a lot of leeway over the last one and a half miles to win the race from Torrens, Adelaide and Renmark by three lengths in 15 minutes 34 seconds. Their crew was W Jones (B), W Harmer (2), C Harmer (3), S Fitzgerald (S) and S Campbell (Cox). Torrens won the Maiden Eights, Tailem Bend the Junior Eights, Mannum the Junior Fours and Junior-Senior Fours and Port the Maiden Fours with J Thomas (B), E Yates (2), C Foster (3) and F Woolman (S).
Prince Alfred College started three crews in the Tub Slides won by Mannum.
1939 – Port Pirie won the Champion Eights in February after overtaking Torrens after the first half mile and crossing eight lengths ahead of Torrens, Adelaide and Mercantile in 19 minutes 23 seconds. The crew was J Phelan (B), E Connelly (2), B Baker (3), R Sly (4), W Jones (5), W Harmer (6), C Harmer (7), S Fitzgerald (S) and S Campbell (Cox). Pirie had borrowed the “LO Betts” for the race and it was probably the last major race for the boat. It was taken out liberally plastered with strips of medical tape to seal splits and holes in the boat’s skin.
Torrens won the Champion Maiden Eights form Port whose crew was SW Brooks (B), J Kinnear (2), C Brooks (3), A Woodsford (4), R Walker (5), W Weaver (6), M Coveney (7), D Croston (S) and D martin (Cox).
Bob Coveney was selected for the Kings Cup crew to race in Brisbane.
Tailem Bend won their first State title in Champion Fours when they defeated Torrens in December. Torrens swamped but Tailem Bend were leading at the time and probably would have won if the accident had not happened. Tailem Bend’s crew was R Mathews (B), J Hughes (2), A Skinner (3), R Tippens (S) and D Tippens (Cox). Torrens had boated a powerful crew in F Lodge (B), K Bowley (2), W McCann (3), J Bollen (S) and G Hastwell (Cox). The time was 16 minutes 46 seconds.
Port won the Tub Slides with F Wormleighton (B), H Phillips (2), J Lock (3), R Bruton (S) and C Davis (Cox) to register the first win over a mile for the new tub, “WR Lock”.
Port also won the Maiden Four race with J Thomas (B), J Kinnear (2), M Coveney (3), W Weaver (S) and C Turner (Cox). That crew also rowed in the Junior Four race but was defeated by Tailem Bend.
Murray Bridge won the Lightweight Fours from Port with J Hounslow (B), G McLeod (2), P McCarthy (3), D Martin (S) and W Williamson (Cox) by one and a half lengths after both crews had been stopped by “crabbing” while racing downwind in rough conditions.
1940 – Tailem Bend won their first Champion Eights title when they defeated Adelaide in February by a third of a length in 17 minutes 44 seconds in very hot and still conditions. Their crew was A Skinner (B), D Jobson (2), L Braendler (3), J Hughes (4), M Hodgson (5), L Rawlinson (6), R Mathews (7), R Tippens (S) and M Morgan (Cox).
Port won the Champion Maiden Eights from Torrens, Mercantile and Mannum by three lengths in 8 minutes 50 seconds. The crew was H Phillips (B), D Martin (2), J Lock (3), R Walker (4), R Hardy (5), R Bruton (6), M Coveney (7), E Yates (S), C Davis (Cox) and R Francis (Coach).
Port also won the Tub Slides race with J Manuel (B), D Draper (2), F Wormleighton (3), G McLeod (S) and R Hardy (Cox).
Murray Bridge defeated Mercantile and Port to win the Champion Junior Eights in March by five lengths in 12 minutes 1 second. Their crew was J Berry (B), M Male (2), G Dalziel (3), B Cummings (4), M Tregilgas (5), R Graetz (6), S Cawte (7), E Doecke (S) and W Swift (Cox). The Port eight was J Lock (B), D Martin (2), J Manuel (3), G McLeod (4), R Hardy (5), R Walker (6), M Coveney (7), E Yates (S) and C Davis (Cox).
Torrens won the Maiden Eights, Adelaide the Senior Fours and Tailem Bend the Lightweight Fours.
The Australian Ladies’ Four Oared Championship was raced at Port Adelaide in April. (Refer to Women Rowers).
1941 – The SA Rowing Association endeavoured to continue with some rowing activities after Henley on Torrens was convened in December 1940. Consequently a general meeting in January decided to form a Subsidiary Committee to control limited rowing activities at Port Adelaide to enable participation in any SA Rowing Association programmes. The following members were elected, WS Murch Captain and Coach, C Davis, D Lock, J Lock, G McLeod, E Sheehy and E Yates.
Dave Croston went into the RAAF in January. After initial training he went to the Wireless Air Gunners School at Ballarat where the Commanding Officer was Wing Commander CO Fairbairn, one of the noted rowing family. In February the No. 1 WAGS Rowing Club had been formed with Dave as Secretary and the C.O. coaching. Their eight was successful in winning the Champion Eights at the RAAF Regatta in Melbourne. No doubt Dave Croston’s enthusiasm had as big a bearing on rowing at Ballarat as it had at Port Adelaide.
1942 – Due to the worsening war situation around Australia in March 1942, the Guardians decided to invoke the full terms of the 17 July 1940 resolution and stopped the use of all rowing equipment from 15 March 1942.
1930 to 1941
World War 2 ended in August 1945 and the huge task of returning servicemen and women to civilian life had to be organised and implemented as quickly as possible. Generally a system of “first in, first out” applied with points awarded for length of service and “bonus” points for those married with families etc. The Army and Air Force concentrated mainly on discharging their five year men, but it was not so simple for the Navy where some men had to wait until their ships returned to Australia.
From the end of 1945 former PARC members began to report back to the club house at Jenkins Street n Sunday mornings when the Guardians were usually in attendance. However, others did not arrive home until mid 1946. Those who returned to take an active interest in rowing were, J Biglands, C Davis, A Dowsett, C Foster, R Francis, A Johnson, P Langdon, D Lock, J Lock, D Martin, C Poynter, M Shannon, C Wald and R Walker.
The rehabilitation phase was wrought with difficulties due to the carryover of wartime shortages of materials, such as timber, fittings, plating metal and pewter. For a time trophies made from mulga wood had to be presented as the most suitable available material.
New members began to arrive and among them were Keith Coldwell and Derek Swan who were introduced to the club committee in January 1946. Keith was to be followed not long after by brothers Ron, in 1946 and Graham in 1948. With the support of other good new oarsmen, Art Smithson, Colin Williams, Allan Wellman, Ross Webb and Ron Simpson, their application and enthusiasm resulted in the development of some of the best crews Port Adelaide had produced since the late 1920’s. Others who rowed such as Jack Ward, Derek Swan and Warren Stone also contributed greatly in rowing management for many years.
This period is noted for some changes which greatly affected the conduct of rowing at Port Adelaide. First, some championship course distances were reduced to 2000 metres. Second, the PARC decided to build its own club house at Snowden’s Beach and the new premises were officially opened in December 1960. Thereafter the direction of racing changed mostly to South towards North so that race finishes could be judged from the club house after having the advantage of shelter in the early stage of the contest and wind assistance from the usually prevailing wind. Third, the SA Rowing Association decided to establish its own headquarters at West Lakes in conjunction with the West Lakes Development organisation. The work was completed in time to conduct the first regatta there on 14 December 1974. As a result almost all future championships were programmed for that venue. Whilst some may not agree that the West Lakes course is ideal, it has proved to provide more sheltered racing generally than the severe conditions sometimes encountered at Port Adelaide. Consequently the PARC annual regatta has mostly comprised racing between schools.
In March 1970 the centenary of the PARC was celebrated in good faith as it had been believed up to that time that the Club was founded in 1870. The error of the legend was discovered in the opening stage of research for this record.
On the resumption of regatta competition the Torrens Rowing Club lost little time in re-establishing the high standards they had attained in the 1930’s. Although the other clubs such as, Murray Bridge, Port Adelaide, Adelaide, Renmark, University and Railways enjoyed short periods of success at the top level, it was Torrens who produced the ability to win championships frequently. In races at Port Adelaide between 1946 and 1974, Torrens won 48 championships, namely, Senior Eights 12, Senior Fours 11, Junior Eights 7, Junior Fours 6, Maiden Eights 6, Lightweight Eights 5 and Lightweight Fours 1. Clearly it was Torrens era and the achievements of their crews reflected credit upon the rowers, coaches and administrators who were able to produce winning qualities over a long period. They are respected and admired for that.
1946 – On 13 January 1946 a general meeting was held for the purpose of electing an Executive Committee to assist the Guardians in the re-establishment of rowing operations. Those chosen were, Chairman HW Wright, Asst Secretary J Lock, Asst Treasurer AR Johnson, Captain and Coach WS Murch, Asst Coach RA Francis, Committee MV Coveney, W Weaver, WD Lock, NW Murch, PB Langdon and G McLeod. On 27 June 1946 the Guardians handed over the club funds and at the regular general meeting Bill Lock resumed as President, Reg Francis Captain, Jack Lock Secretary, Allan Johnson Treasurer and Lockie Murch Coach.
In December the Railways Club convincingly won the Champion Senior Fours race from Port Adelaide, Mercantile and Torrens by six lengths in 14 minutes 14 seconds. Railways crew comprised S Dyer (B), J MacDonald (2), R Lewis (3), L Steer (S) and W Watts (Cox).
Port Adelaide was represented by N Collins (B), R Francis (2), M Coveney (3), R Walker (S) and C Davis (Cox) and it was the first occasion since the early 1930’s that the club had been represented in the race.
The crew’s preparation was hampered by the withdrawal of two members selected for the No. 2 seat. Reg Francis, who had not raced for almost ten years, and without training, decided to fill in rather than forfeit the race.
Torrens won the Maiden Eights, Maiden Fours and Tub Slides. Adelaide won the Junior Fours from Port Pirie.
1947 – After winning the Champion Maiden Eights title at Murray Bridge at the end of January, the Murray Bridge eight narrowly defeated Torrens in a brilliant race for the Senior Eight championship in February by half a length in 16 minutes 15 seconds. The winning crew comprised B Mobbs (B), R Pike (2), R Harms (3), I Graetz (4), D Standley (5), M Paech (6), J Burt (7), R Graetz (S) and M Hannaford (Cox).
Torrens won the Maiden Eight and the Tub Slide races. Mannum won the Maiden Fours and an interesting status aspect is that Railways won the Junior Fours with a crew comprising three of the current Senor Four champions.
In March, Mercantile won the Champion Junior Eight race from Torrens who swamped in choppy conditions and badly damaged their best eight “Deb Earl”. Mercantile finished the race with seven men after the No. 3 oar broke at the start. The winning crew comprised R Mathews (B), M Taliangis (2), K Iron (3), W Allister (4), J Neville (5), W Nerlich (6), E Yates (7), J Palmer (S) and B Mitchell (Cox).
Murray Bridge won the Senior Fours from Railways by three quarters of a length in 7 minutes 19 seconds. The crew was B Mobbs (B), R Pike (2), J Burt (3), R Graetz (S) and Kenyon (Cox).
In November an Olympic Test Race for Fours was contested by Murray Bridge A and B crews, Mannum, Mercantile, Adelaide and Torrens for the right to row in an interstate test race at Ballarat in January 1948. Mannum was leading Mercantile and Murray Bridge B when the first two boats swamped 150 yards from the finish. Torrens had retired earlier after a mishap and Murray Bridge A swamped a half mile from the finish. The winning crew was R Harris (B), R Pike (2), N Gillies (3), B Mobbs (S) and N Isaacson (Cox).
Torrens won both the Maiden and Junior Eight races. Bill Allister, Mercantile, won the State Sculls from P Royce, Torrens and J Jaffery, Adelaide by four lengths. Port Adelaide won the Junior Fours with D Swan (B), N Collins (2), M Coveney (3), R Coldwell (S) and Maiden Fours with A Smithson (B), N Murch (2), A Wellman (3) and K Coldwell (S).
In December, Torrens convincingly won the Champion Senior Fours from Murray Bridge B, Mannum, Mercantile and Adelaide in rough conditions which resulted in the race being staged downstream instead of upstream. Both Mercantile and Adelaide were forced to retire about half a mile before the finish line. The winning crew was L Goodenough (B), L Steer (2), K Bowley (3), P Morelli (S) and B Dolman (Cox) by eight lengths.
Torrens also won the Maiden Eight race from Adelaide and the Champion Junior Eights on a row over.
In the Tub Slides race, eight crews started and when in a winning position 100 yards from the finish Murray Bridge swamped, followed soon after by the second crew, Mercantile at Tragedy Dock. The race was won by Port Adelaide with J Kidd (B), F Cockburn (2), L Cawte (3), C Williams (S) and G Brock (Cox) from Berri.
1948 – In this period the Le Fevre Peninsula schoolboys began to compete at regattas. Regular winners were K Simmons (B), R Osborn (2), H Wilkinson (3), D Nenke (S) and G Brock (Cox). Denis Nenke, who showed early signs of developing into a prominent oarsman, was unfortunately killed in an accident.
In February, Port Adelaide won a Maiden Four race with L Cawte (B), N Murch (2), A Smithson (3), R Walker (S) and G Brock (Cox) from Mercantile and Torrens by three lengths.
Torrens won the Senior Fours title in November from Mannum and Murray Bridge by eight lengths in 13 minutes 44 seconds with L Goodenough (B), L Steer (2), K Bowley (3), D Glazbrook (S) and K McCoy (Cox).
Port Adelaide won the Junior Eight race with D Swan (B), R Webb (2), L Cawte (3), R Coldwell (4), N Murch (5), C Williams (6), A Smithson (7), K Coldwell (S) and C Davis (Cox) from Torrens and Port Pirie.
In December, Torrens won the Maiden Eight Championship by two and a half lengths from Port Pirie and Mannum with L Williamson (B), M Lawrie (2), R Cooter (3), D Davies (4), K Bowley (5), L Steer (6), L Goodenough (7), D Glazbrook (S) and K Parham (Cox).
1949 – In January, Port Adelaide won a Maiden Eight race with D Swan (B), R Webb (2), L Cawte (3), R Coldwell (4), N Murch (5), C Williams (6), A Smithson (7), K Coldwell (S) and C Davis (Cox) from Torrens by one length.
Torrens again annexed the Champion Senior Eight race in February by twelve lengths from Murray Bridge in 15 minutes 58 seconds with L Williamson (B), P Morelli (2), M Lawrie (3), R Claridge (4), R Morelli (5), L Steer (6), L Goodenough (7), D Glazbrook (S) and J Pengelly (Cox).
In November, PARC “B” Novice Four won the Mercantile and Port A with the crew, R Page (B), K Smyth (2), D Wade (3), G Coldwell (S) and G Brock (Cox).
In December, Adelaide won its first championship since 1936 when it took the Champion Maiden Eight title from Torrens, Mercantile, University and Railways by half a length. The winning crew was J Hocking (B), D Lavis (2), I Jamieson (3), J Stevens (4), C Blanch (5), M Phillips (6), R Wallman (7), K Morris (S) and R Kaibel (Cox).
Torrens won the Champion Senior Four race from Mercantile, Murray Bridge and Mannum by three lengths. Their crew was L Williamson (B), L Steer (2), R Morelli (3), P Morelli (S) and K McCoy (Cox).
Port Adelaide rowed over for the Junior Eight race with N Murch (B), R Hodgeman (2), E Tucker (3), W Stone (4), C Williams (5), W Thomas (6), A Smithson (7), K Coldwell (S) and J Doyle (Cox).
Port Adelaide A also won the Lightweight Four race from Torrens and Railways with the crew of A Frame (B), K Carter (2), B Kenny (3), J Ward (S) and R Baker (Cox).
The first new PARC post-war boat, a Tub Four built by H Lounder, was christened by Mrs V Cawte and named “Memorial IV” in recognition of the loss of four servicemen members who did not return. Later the “Wirilla” was renovated and renamed “AJ Parham”.
The grand old man of Port Adelaide rowing and Life Member for 43 years, Joe Clouston, passed away after long and valuable service.
1950 – In January, Berri won the Champion Junior Eight race from Port Adelaide and Torrens by one and a quarter lengths in 11 minutes 52 seconds with M Harris (B), G Huckstepp (2), J Spangler (3), R Adams (4), R Harris (5), Ted Thomas (6), K Murphy (7), R Greenwood (S) and B Royal (Cox).
Torrens defeated Murray Bridge for the Champion Senior Eight title in February in choppy conditions after an even race by two and three quarter lengths in 19 minutes 25 seconds. The successful crew was M Harrison (B), D Davies (2), M Lawrie (3), R Partington (4), R Morelli (5), L Steer (6), L Williamson (7), P Morelli (S) and J Pengelly (Cox).
Port Adelaide won the Junior Four race in a hard fought contest from Mannum, Torrens and Mercantile by the small margin of three feet. The crew was N McKenna (B), R Coldwell (2), A Smithson (3), K Coldwell (S) and C Davis (Cox).
Port Adelaide also won the Maiden Eight race by two lengths from Adelaide with R Page (B), K Smyth (2), R Simpson (3), F Cockburn (4), G Thomas (5), J Ward (6), D Wade (7), G Coldwell (S) and G Brock (Cox).
Murray Bridge won the Maiden Four race from Torrens, Railways, Mercantile and Port Adelaide.
Mannum defeated Torrens by three and a half lengths in the Lightweight Four race.
Torrens captured the Junior Four race in November by three feet from Adelaide and Port Adelaide with a crew of Challinger, Partington, Lawrie, Watkin and Monkhouse (Cox).
Port Adelaide won the Maiden Eight race by two and a half lengths from Adelaide and Torrens with the crew of R Page (B), D Nenke (2), Ron Simpson (3), G Thomas (4), K Simmons (5), J Ward (6), D Wade (7), G Coldwell (S) and G Brock (Cox).
In December, Port Adelaide won its first Senior Four title since 1928 from Torrens, Adelaide and Berri by one and a half lengths with the crew of A Smithson (B), A Wellman (2), C Williams (3), K Coldwell (S) and C Davis (Cox).
Port Adelaide also won the Champion Maiden Eight race from Torrens and Mercantile with R Page (B), D Nenke (2), F Skuce (3), G Westmoreland (4), Ron Simpson (5), J Ward (6), K Simmons (7), G Coldwell (S) and G Brock (Cox).
1951 – Because of rough conditions the Champion Senior Eight race and other events had to be postponed at Port Adelaide in mid-February. The event was rowed at Murray Bridge on the following day.
The only race rowed was the Lightweight Fours which was won by Port Adelaide after the Torrens boat suffered a mishap. The winning crew was R Page (B), J Simmons (2), A Frame (3), J Ward (S) and C Davis (Cox). That was the day Ron Coldwell was swamped three times in an open tub scull on the way to the start for the Maiden Sculls.
Art Smithson, Kevin Simmons, Keith Coldwell and Charlie Davis represented the Club in the SA King’s Cup crew that raced in Brisbane in April.
Railways won the Champion Junior Four race over 2000 metres in November from Adelaide and Torrens by two lengths. Their crew was N Low (B), H Pike (2), A Thornton (3), G Burgoine (S) and W Watts (Cox).
Port Adelaide won the Maiden Eight race from Torrens and Railways by five lengths. The crew comprised K Smyth (B), A Childs (2), G Westmoreland (3), Ron Simpson (4), B Stacey (5), D Jones (6), R Lepley (7), J Simmons (S) and G Brock (Cox).
Port Adelaide also won the Maiden Four race by three lengths from Torrens and Mercantile with R Page (B), Ron Simpson (2), D Wade (3), G Coldwell (S) and G Brock (Cox).
Port Adelaide scored again in the Lightweight Fours by two lengths from Railways and Torrens with D Swan (B), H Smith (2), A Frame (3), N Murch (S) and J Moffat (Cox).
For Port Adelaide K Smyth (B), A Childs (2), G Westmoreland (3), Ron Simpson (4), B Stacey (5), D Jones (6), R Lepley (7), J Simmons (S) and G Brock (Cox) rowed over to take the points for the Junior Eight race.
Port Adelaide had a very successful regatta in December when club crews won six events on the programme. However, in the Champion Senior Four race Torrens won comfortably by nine lengths in 10 minutes 21 seconds from Port Adelaide. Their crew was L Williamson (B), R Partington (2), I Lowcock (3), P Morelli (S) and R Monkhouse (Cox).
The Champion Maiden Eight race was won by Port Adelaide after determined opposition from Railways, Torrens and Adelaide by four lengths in 8 minutes 54 seconds. The crew was K Smyth (B), A Childs (2), W Herriman (3), Reg Simpson (4), B Stacey (5), D Jones (6), R Lepley (7), J Simmons (S) and G Brock (Cox).
Bill Allister, Mercantile, won the Champion Sculls by two lengths from R Bradley, P Royce and S Taylor in 12 minutes 20 seconds.
The Junior Four race went to Port Adelaide from Torrens and Adelaide by two and a half lengths in 6 minutes 9 seconds with E Tucker (B), F Cockburn (2), R Simpson (3), R Webb (S) and Peters (Cox).
The Maiden Four race also went to Port Adelaide from Mercantile and Torrens by three lengths in 6 minutes 30 seconds with R Page (B), J Wade (2), D Wade (3), G Coldwell (S) and J Moffat (Cox).
Novice Fours again went to Port Adelaide from Railways and Adelaide by three lengths in 3 minutes 45 seconds with Mogg (B), Flavel (2), Jones (3), J Conley (S) and C Davis (Cox).
Port Adelaide defeated Torrens in the Junior Eights by two and a quarter lengths in 6 minutes 40 seconds with the crew K Smyth (B), A Childs (2), Smith (3), R Simpson (4), B Stacey (5), D Jones (6), R Lepley (7), J Simmons (S) and G Brock (Cox). The Lightweight Four event was a row over for Port Adelaide (no crew details).
1952 – In February, Port Adelaide won the Champion Senior Eight race from Torrens, Murray Bridge, Railways and Mercantile by three and a half lengths in 17 minutes 58 seconds with the crew of F Skuce (B), R Webb (2), Ron Simpson (3), R Coldwell (4), K Simmons (5), K Coldwell (6), E Tucker (7), G Coldwell (S) and C Davis (Cox).
In the same month Port Adelaide also won the Champion Junior Eight race from Murray Bridge, Torrens and Railways by four lengths in 6 minutes 50 seconds with E Tucker (B), J Ward (2), F Skuce (3), F Cockburn (4), K Simmons (5), Ron Simpson (6), D Wade (7), G Coldwell (S) and G Brock (Cox).
In November, Port Adelaide won the Champion Junior Four title from Torrens and Railways after Mercantile withdrew, by two and a half lengths. The crew was R Lepley (B), W Mayfield (2), Ron Simpson (3), G Coldwell (S) and C Davis (Cox). Light rain and a side wind made conditions uncomfortable for the crews.
In the Junior Eight race, Port Adelaide won by several lengths from Railways with R Page (B), K Smyth (2), D Jones (3), F Cockburn (4), W Mayfield (5), R Simpson (6), R Lepley (7), J Ward (S) and G Brock (Cox).
Very close margins resulted in the Maiden Eight and Senior Four races won by Torrens in each instance. Their crews were Watson (B), Glazbrook (2), Lucas (3), Taylor (4), Sykes (5), Thompson (6), O’Brien (7), Wakefield (S) and Fraser (Cox) by a half canvas from Railways and Adelaide. The next crew was D Davies (B), R Partington (2), I Lowcock (3), P Morelli (S) and Farrow (Cox) by a canvas from Port Adelaide.
Torrens also won the Maiden Four race from Port Adelaide. Adelaide took the Novice Four race from Torrens and Mannum.
Port Adelaide beat Railways in Lightweight Fours by one length with A Frame (B), Evans (2), R Page (3), K Smyth (S) and G Brock (Cox).
In December, Renmark won the Senior Four Championship from Port Adelaide and Torrens by one and a quarter lengths. The winning crew was F Haynes (B), T Edmonds (2), J Pearce (3), R Edmonds (S) and Pilgrim (Cox).
Torrens won the Champion Maiden Eight race from Port Adelaide and Railways by one and a quarter lengths. Their crew was Sykes (B), Glazbrook (2), Lucas (3), Draper (4), Ramsay (5), Thompson (6), O’Brien (7), Wakefield (S) and Farrow (Cox).
1953 – In January, Renmark won the Junior Eight Championship from Port Adelaide, Torrens and Railways by three lengths in 12 minutes. Their crew was T Carr (B), F Giles (2), D Schleicke (3), T Edmonds (4), F Haines (5), T Giles (6), J Pearce (7), R Edmonds (S) and G Pilgrim (Cox).
D McKay, Torrens, won the State Sculls title.
In February, Port Adelaide won the Champion Senior Eight race comfortably from Torrens and Renmark in 19 minutes 9 seconds. The crew was E Tucker (B), R Coldwell (2), Ron Simpson (3), W Mayfield (4), J Hill (5), K Coldwell (6), R Lepley (7), G Coldwell (S) and C Davis (Cox).
Port Adelaide won the Maiden Eight race with I McFarlane (B), B Wilson (2), A Doyle (3), R Hinton (4), R Sims (5), D Sweetman (6), R Cameron (7), W Field (S) and G Brock (Cox).
Port Adelaide Lightweight Four also won with A Coldwell (B), B Pearce (2), A Frame (3) and K Way (S).
The Port Adelaide Lightweight Eight at the regatta comprised J Hood (B), D Cathcart (2), J Rogers (3), D Coldwell (4), A Coldwell (5), K Way (6), A Frame (7), B Pearce (S) and G Brock (Cox).
In November, Torrens won the Champion Junior Eight race from Adelaide, Railways and University by four lengths. Their crew comprised R Sykes (B), B Thomas (2), B Lucas (3), K Burke (4), B Draper (5), J Thompson (6), F O’Brien (7), M Ely (S) and J Pengelly (Cox).
The Senior Four Championship in December was won by Port Adelaide from Torrens and Renmark by four lengths. The crew was Ron Simpson (B), Reg Simpson (2), W Mayfield (3), G Coldwell (S) and C Davis (Cox).
1954 – Port Adelaide won a Senior Eight race at Murray Bridge in January with a crew of R Page (B), F Cockburn (2), R Hodgeman (3), Reg Simpson (4), Ron Simpson (5), K Coldwell (6), R Webb (7), G Coldwell (S) and C Davis (Cox) by half a length from Murray Bridge, Adelaide and Torrens. The four crews shot across the finishing line almost abreast. The most spectacular event seen in SA for many years.
A fortnight later Port Adelaide easily defeated Renmark, Adelaide and Torrens for the Senior Eight Championship when the latter two crews did not finish the course. The winning crew was R Hodgeman (B), F Cockburn (2), R Webb (3), Reg Simpson (4), Ron Simpson (5), R Coldwell (6), A Smithson (7), K Coldwell (S) and C Davis (Cox).
Also in February, Mannum won the Champion Maiden Eight title from Torrens and Railways by one and a half lengths. Their crew was D Gaskell (B), B Schumacher (2), R Male (3), N Borman (4), W Banks (5), J Banks (6), R Hassell (7), P Lindner (S) and K Janike (Cox).
In December, Renmark won the Champion Junior Four race from Adelaide and Mannum by three lengths in 7 minutes 44 seconds. The crew comprised T Carr (B), P Giles (2), J Fear (3), T Giles (S) and G Pilgrim (Cox).
Port Adelaide won the Maiden Four race from Mercantile and Urrbrae by three lengths with R Main (B), K Way (2), T Thompson (3), B Pearce (S) and A Coldwell (Cox).
Renmark also scored an easy win in December for the Senior Eight Championship from Adelaide and University. The crew was T Carr (B), P Giles (2), J Fear (3), D Eaton (4), F Edmonds (5), T Giles (6), J Pearce (7), R Edmonds (S) and G Pilgrim (Cox).
1955 – Renmark took first and second places in the Senior Four Championship in February. The winners were F Edmonds (B), D Eaton (2), J Pearce (3), R Edmonds (S) and G Pilgrim (Cox).
In the race for the Maiden Eight Championship the title was awarded to Adelaide from Mannum and Torrens after the latter were disqualified for repeated interference during the race. The winning crew comprised M Rossiter (B), G Radford (2), P Skellon (3), K Stirling (4), D Wiles (5), R Kennedy (6), D Patterson (7), A Matthews (S) and D Radford (Cox).
The King’s Cup race staged at Port Adelaide in May was won with an inspired burst over the last 1000 yards by Western Australia from Victoria and New South Wales by two and a half lengths in 15 minutes 40 seconds in the Port Adelaide boat “JH Clouston”. The winners represented Australia at the Rome Olympiad.
In November, Adelaide won the Champion Junior Four race from Mannum and Torrens by one length with the crew M Rossiter (B), M Tiddy (2), K Stanton (3), A Matthews (S) and W Hardy (Cox).
Port Adelaide won the Maiden Eight race from Adelaide and Prince Alfred College by three feet with the crew M Campbell (B), A Coldwell (2), R Leach (3), K Way (4), L Iles (5), D Coldwell (6), B Juers (7), B Walsh (S) and T Coldwell (Cox).
Port Adelaide also won the Senior Four race from Torrens and Railways by a half canvas with R age (B), Reg Simpson (2), Ron Simpson (3), G Coldwell (S) and D Clarke (Cox). A Port Adelaide crew of L Iles (B), D Coldwell (2), B Juers (3), B Walsh (S) and I Hood (Cox) won the Maiden Four event from Adelaide High School and Adelaide by half a length.
Mannum won the Lightweight Fours and Adelaide the Senior Eight race.
Bob Bradley won the Clouston Sculls trophy.
Later in November, Renmark B won the Senor Four championship by six feet from Port Adelaide with the crew T Carr (B), P Giles (2), J Fear (3), T Giles (S) and E Churchman (Cox).
Port Adelaide won the Lightweight Four race from Mannum by three lengths with A Frame (B), A Coldwell (2), R Page (3), K Way (4) and A Scott (Cox).
In December at the Champion Junior Eight regatta rough weather caused four races to be cancelled.
Adelaide won the Junior Eight Championship from University and Torrens by one and a quarter lengths with M Forgan (B), G Radford (2), K Stirling (3), R Kennedy (4), K Stanton (5), R Pennington (6), M Rossiter (7), A Mathews (S) and W Hardy (Cox).
Port Adelaide won the Maiden Fours with L Iles (B), D Coldwell (2), B Juers (3), B Walsh (S) and T Coldwell (Cox).
Port Adelaide also won the Lightweight Fours with A Frame (B), A Coldwell (2), R Page (3), K Way (S) and T Coldwell (Cox).
1956 – In February, Renmark won the Champion Senior Eight race from Adelaide and Port Adelaide by a quarter of a length in 6 minutes 12 seconds (2000 metres). The crew was T Carr (B), P Giles (2), J Fear (3), D Eaton (4), F Edmonds (5), T Giles (6), J Pearce (7), R Edmonds (S) and G Pilgrim (Cox).
In November, Adelaide B won the Champion Junior Four title from Port Adelaide by half a length with R Pennington (B), D Wurm (2), D Wiles (3), A Matthews (S) and P Osborne (Cox).
Also in November, Torrens won the Senior Four Championship from Adelaide and Renmark by two lengths. Their crew was C Graetz (B), I Lowcock (2), B Draper (3), A Jones (S) and R Wannon (Cox).
On that day Port Adelaide won the Junior Eight and Junior Four races with the following crews, B Juers (B), D Coldwell (2), M Campbell (3), K Way (4), L Iles (5), H Vonthethoff (6), J Conley (7), B Walsh (S) and C Davis (Cox). The second crew was B Juers (B), H Vonthethoff (2), J Conley (3), B Walsh (S) and P Clarke (Cox).
In December, Adelaide won the Champion Senior Eight race from Port Adelaide and Renmark by one length with the crew of R Pennington (B), D Sarah (2), A St J Allen (3), T Bourn (4), R Luke (5), D Wiles (6), I Jamieson (7), D Wurm (S) and W Hardy (Cox).
1957 – Port Adelaide won the Junior Eight championship in February by two lengths from Adelaide and Torrens. The crew was A Frame (B), D Coldwell (2), A Coldwell (3), H Vonthethoff (4), M Campbell (5), B Pearce (6), B Juers (7), B Walsh (S) and C Davis (Cox).
In November, Port Adelaide B crew won the Champion Junior Four race from Port Adelaide A and Adelaide by two lengths in 8 minutes 14 seconds over 2000 metres. The crew comprised A Coldwell (B), H Vonthethoff (2), B Juers (3), B Walsh (S) and C Davis (Cox).
Railways won three races, Maiden Eights, Maiden Fours and Novice Fours, at the regatta.
Later in November poor coxing cost Adelaide and Port Adelaide the first two places in the Senior Eight race when they steered inside buoys. The race was awarded to Torrens, who also won the Senior Four event. Port Adelaide won the Lightweight Fours from Railways and Mannum with G Brock (B), B Pearce (2), A Frame (3), Coldwell (S) and C Brock (Cox).
In December, Port Adelaide won the Senior Eight Championship from Adelaide, Berri, Torrens and Renmark by three quarters of a length with the crew of A Coldwell (B), J Conley (2), Ron Simpson (3), H Vonthethoff (4), K Simmons (5), Reg Simpson (6), B Juers (7), B Walsh (S) and G Brock (Cox).
1958 – In February, Adelaide won the Champion Junior Eight race from Port Adelaide, Torrens and Railways by half a length with N Sarah (B), G Radford (2), B Dalton (3), J Brock (4), P Skellon (5), D Harvey (6), T McCormick (7), B Sawley (S) and D Radford (Cox).
In September, Ross Webb and Graham Coldwell were appointed to organise the building of a new club house on the Port River.
In November, Torrens won the Junior Four Championship from Adelaide, Port Adelaide, Mannum and Railways by two lengths.
In December, Torrens were never seriously challenged in winning the Champion Senior Four title in their new boat “Jack Bollen” with the crew of C Graetz (B), A Jones (2), B Draper (3), D Glanville (S) and J Cuell (Cox).
Torrens also won the Senior Eight race. Renmark won the Junior Eights and Fours. Port Adelaide won the Maiden Eights with L McPharlane (B), B Wilson (2), A Doyle (3), R Hinter (4), R Sims (5), D Sweetman (6), R Cameron (7), W Field (S) and G Brock (Cox), the Lightweight Eights with J Hood (B), D Cathcart (2), J Rogers (3), D Coldwell (4), A Coldwell (5), K Way (6), A Frame (7), B Pearce (S) and G Brock (Cox), and the Lightweight Fours with A Coldwell (B), K Way (2), A Frame (3), B Pearce (S) and D Hardy (Cox).
1959 – Torrens won the Senior Eight Championship from Renmark, Adelaide and Railways by three lengths in February. Their crew was G Clode (B), R Cornelius (2), C Graetz (3), B Robertson (4), R Russell (5), L Southcott (6), B Draper (7), D Glanville (S) and G Cuell (Cox).
The Champion Junior Four race in November resulted in a dead heat between Torrens and Pulteney Grammar School racing against Port Adelaide, Railways and Adelaide.
In December, Torrens easily won the Champion Senior Four race from Adelaide and Port Adelaide by six lengths. An unusual feature was a protest by Adelaide about Torrens supporters barracking from cars driven along the river bank.
Torrens also won the Senior Eight race, Port Pirie the Junior and Maiden Eight races and Adelaide the Novice Fours. No other details were published.
1960 – In February, Torrens defeated Port Adelaide for the Lightweight Eight Championship.
In August, Port Adelaide took delivery of a new regulation four to be named after Life Member, Reg Francis.
In November, Torrens won the Champion Lightweight Four race from Railways, Mannum, Murray Bridge and Port Adelaide by two and a half lengths with L Russell (B), J Blank (2), P Blank (3), F Tothill (S) and V Bollen (Cox).
Railways won the Champion Junior Four race from Port Adelaide. No details.
Torrens overcame Dimboola, Port Adelaide and University to win the Senior Four Championship in December by three lengths with R Russell (B), L Southcott (2), C Graetz (3), D Glanville (B) and V Bollen (Cox).
In the Junior Eight race over 1500 metres at the half way mark less than a canvas separated four crews, namely Murray Bridge, University, Port Pirie and Adelaide. The latter eventually won by one and a half lengths, only two feet separating the other crews. Dimboola and Mildura won the Lightweight Fours and Junior Fours respectively.
This occasion was marked by the official opening of the new Port Adelaide club house at Snowden’s Beach by the Mayor of Port Adelaide, Mr PW Whicker.
1961 – In February, Torrens won the Senior Eight Championship from Adelaide and University by three quarters of a length. The crew was P Blank (B), A Jones (2), L Southcott (3), B Robertson (4), C Graetz (5), D Vincent (6), R Russell (7), D Glanville (S) and V Bollen (Cox).
Torrens also won the Senior and Junior Four races. Adelaide won the Junior Eight race from University and Torrens by a canvas after University had led most of the way. Pulteney Grammar School officially launched its rowing club into active competition when three new boats were named.
The King’s Cup race over 2000 metres staged at Port Adelaide in May was won by Victoria from New South Wales and Western Australia in 5 minutes 52 seconds after rowing the first 1000 metres in 2 minutes 20 seconds to lead throughout the race. The event attracted 7000 spectators.
In November, Torrens won the Senior Four Championship from Adelaide and Murray Bridge and also the Champion Junior Four race from Adelaide B and Adelaide A. No other details were published.
Adelaide won the Lightweight Eight Championship from Torrens and University with the crew of J Ingham (B), N Sarah (2), R Langman (3), B Sawley (4), G Hill (5), P Osborne (6), J McLachlan (7), R Ingham (S) and G Perry (Cox).
Torrens won the Senior Eight and Lightweight Four Championships in December from Adelaide. No details.
1962 – In March, University scored a fine double in winning both the Junior Eight and Maiden Eight Championships. They defeated Torrens in the former and Pulteney Grammar School and Adelaide in the latter race. No other details are available.
Torrens again won the Champion Senior Four race in December from Torrens B and University by three and a half lengths with M Merkenslager (B), D Vincent (2), C Graetz (3), R Cornelius (S) and V Bollen (Cox).
On the same day Torrens also won the Maiden Eight Championship from University, Railways and Adelaide. Their crew was N Tonkin (B), W Wikowski (2), J Polkinghorne (3), T Ridlings (4), F Angus (5), R Lawrence (6), G Platten (S) and R Meek (Cox). One rower unnamed.
1963 – Torrens notched another Senior Four Championship in November defeating Murray Bridge, Torrens B and Adelaide with I Russell (B), D Vincent (2), R Russell (3), R Cornelius (S) and V Bollen (Cox).
In December, Torrens also added another Senior Eight Championship from University, Port Adelaide and Adelaide with N Tonkin (B), M Merkenslager (2), D Lee (3), D Mitchell (4), I Russell (5), D Vincent (6), R Russell (7), R Cornelius (S) and V Bollen (Cox).
Adelaide won the Champion Lightweight Four title from University and Adelaide B by half a length with G Hill (B), P Osborne (2), R Ingham (3), L Cox (S) and A Goldsworthy (Cox).
1964 – In March, University won the Champion Maiden Eight race from Scotch College and Port Adelaide with R Pascoe, J Goldsmith, M Burgess, P Nolan, C Nicholls, R Baker, H Bone and G Footer (Cox). One rower unnamed.
Dimboola won the Senior Four Championship from Torrens and Mildura by one and a half lengths in 6 minutes 54 seconds in December. Their crew was W Taylor (B), H Schultze (2), G Rodda (3), G Gazelle (S) and E McCabe (Cox).
1965 – St Peters College won the Champion Junior Eight race over 2000 metres in February from Berri, Torrens, Railways and Port Adelaide by one and a quarter lengths in 6 minutes 32 seconds. No details.
Torrens won the Lightweight Eight Championship from Adelaide in 6 minutes 42 seconds.
Also in February, University won the Champion Senior Eight race from Torrens, St Peter’s and Adelaide. The crew comprised H Bone (B), P Nolan (2), D Gunson (3), W Hume (4), R McLeod (5), D Bishop (6), A Ramsay (7), W Hay (S) and R Lawson (Cox).
University also won the Lightweight Four Championship from Mannum, Torrens and Murray Bridge with G Footer (B), J Cheminsky (2), R Morgan (3), J Bolt (S) and P Taylor (Cox).
1966 – In January the Champion Senior Eight race was won by a composite crew which defeated University, Torrens and Adelaide by one and a quarter lengths. The crew comprised R Russell (B), I Russell (2), J Goodhardt (3), B Richardson (4), W Hay (5), D Bishop (6), L Southcott (7), M Jeffries (S) and P Taylor (Cox).
University won the Lightweight Four Championship from Mannum, Torrens, Murray Bridge and Port Adelaide in 7 minutes 37 seconds with the crew Gordon (B), Newland (2), Bonnin (3), Footer (S) and G Perry (Cox).
In February, Torrens won the Champion Junior Eight race from Murray Bridge and Adelaide by one and three quarter lengths in 6 minutes 15 seconds with V Bollen (B), D Edmonds (2), H Winter (3), B Stone (4), J Yates (5), B Geue (6), W Otten (7), J Treloar (S) and D Penglis (Cox).
1967 – In February, Railways won the Junior Four Championship from Torrens and Mannum by three and a half lengths in 6 minutes 55 seconds.
University won the Champion Lightweight Eight title from Railways and Mannum by one length.
In March, Torrens won the Champion Junior Eight race from University and Railways by three quarters of a length in 6 minutes 13 seconds with A Boswell (B), D Munro (2), W Otten (3), J Ranger (4), H Winter (5), I Munro (6), J Yates (7), L Halse (S) and I Knuckey (Cox).
Railways won the Champion Junior Four race from Mannum by six lengths.
1968 – In December, University defeated Torrens B and Torrens A for the Senior Four Championship by two and a half lengths.
Torrens won the Lightweight Eight Championship from Murray Bridge and Railways by one and a quarter lengths.
1969 – In February, Railways defeated Torrens and Murray Bridge for the Junior Eight Championship by one and a quarter lengths in 6 minutes 55 seconds.
In March, Railways also won the Champion Junior Four race from Adelaide and Murray Bridge by two lengths.
Pulteney Grammar School won the Champion Maiden Eight title from Scotch College and University by two lengths.
1970 – Torrens won the Junior Four Championship in February from Railways and Murray Bridge by one length in 6 minutes 54 seconds. Their crew was M Eastaughffe (B), L Lipps (2), R Cooper (3), V Bollen (S).
In March, Torrens won the Champion Junior Eight race from St Peters College and University by three quarters of a length in 6 minutes 34 seconds. The crew was N Lippis (B), M Eastaughffe (2), W Otten (3), L Halse (4), N Button (5), B Ward (6), N Shields (7), P Cooper (S) and R Potter (Cox).
In December, Torrens won the Senior Four Championship from University A and Adelaide by one and a half lengths in 7 minutes 1 second. The crew was I Munro (B), N Button (2), B Richardson (3), W Dankbaar (S) and G Worth (Cox).
Torrens also won the Champion Lightweight Eight race from Adelaide and Murray Bridge by one and a half lengths in 6 minutes 52 seconds with N Lippis (B), Lewis (2), M Eastaughffe (3), G Bobaly (4), R Tedge (5), R Footer (6), C Smith (7), L Lippis (S) and P Wilson (Cox).
The Beginners Four race went to Port Adelaide from Tailem Bend by three lengths in 3 minutes with L Wilson (B), G Wilson (2), P Brooksby (3), W Forte (S) and C Davis (Cox).
1971 – In February, Adelaide won the Maiden Eight championship from Murray Bridge and Torrens by three quarters of a length in 6 minutes 19 seconds. The crew was G Menzel (B), P Birks (2), A Selway (3), P Jeffries (4), R Prescott (5), G Kernot (6), M Lohmeyer (7), T Marshall (S) and M Evans (Cox).
Also in February, Mannum won the Champion Junior Four title from Murray Bridge by one and a half lengths with D Mobbs (B), D Block (2), T Owen (3), B Borman (S).
In March, Torrens won the Champion Junior Eight race from Murray Bridge and University by two lengths in 6 minutes 25 seconds. Their crew comprised N Lippis (B), G Bobaly (2), M Eastaughffe (3), N Rendell (4), A Matson (5), B Ward (6), J Beckwith (7) and P Cooper (S).
A PARC schoolboy eight won the B Division Eights final at a SARA regatta with K Koulakis (B), T Campion (2), N Reeves (3), J Papageorgiou (4), G Fry (5), M Ward (6), S Longmire (7), A Coldwell (S) and A Ward (Cox).
1972 – In March, Torrens defeated Adelaide for the Junior Eight Championship. On the same day Torrens finished ahead of University for the Senior Four Championship but both crews were disqualified. The outcome is not known.
In October, Port Adelaide launched a new eight “Ross Webb”.
Our old stalwart of many years, Charlie Lawton passed away.
In December, University won the Champion Senor Four race from Torrens A and B.
1973 – In February, Murray Bridge won the Junior Four Championship. University won the Champion Senior Eight race from Torrens by one length in 6 minutes 20 seconds.
In March, Adelaide won the Junior Eight Championship from Torrens by three feet in 6 minutes 48 seconds with A Hardy (B), G Parker (2), M Kernot (3), M Hebblewhite (4), M Marquis (5), R Prescott (6), M Lohmeyer (7), P Jeffries (S) and W Goldsworthy (Cox).
In April, Torrens won the Champion Maiden Eight title from Adelaide and St Peters College by three lengths in 6 minutes 31 seconds.
The Port Adelaide under 16 schoolboy four won its twenty fourth consecutive race with K Koulakis (B), J Papageorgiou (2), A Coldwell (3), M Ward (S) and A Ward (Cox).
1974 – In March, St Peters College won the Maiden Eight Championship from Christian Brothers College and Scotch College.
A composite University-Adelaide crew won the Champion Junior Four race from University B.
1975 – 1977 From the mid 1960s the predominance of the Port River course as the venue for championship races was steadily eroded as more events were allocated to clubs on the River Murray. In the 1970s the SARA decided to build its headquarters for rowing at West Lakes in conjunction with the general housing development in that area. On 14th December 1974 the first regatta was staged at West Lakes and that marked the end of championship rowing at Port Adelaide. Since then other changes have occurred in the structure of rowing regatta programmes which now extend from early morning to beyond mid- afternoon. Another variation has been the influx of women rowers into the sport and much of that has come about by the extension of rowing to more colleges and schools. To the old oarsmen, accustomed to intense inter-club rivalry and programmes of seven or eight races, the present scene appears to be one of fragmentation. However, one must accept that there are now more rowers competing, more races and more winners going home happy.
1847 – 1924
First Captain of the Port Adelaide Rowing Club and Engineer of Wills Street, Largs Bay.
Jack was born in Cannon Street, Port Adelaide and educated at a private school on Le Fevre Peninsula. He trained as an Engineer with Thwaites, Port Adelaide, and was employed at the Glanville Dockyard. When Port Pirie was opened he moved there, but by 1861 he had returned to Port Adelaide and was engaged in Nile Street at Christie’s iron foundry, which he took over on the death of the owner. Through his honesty in business and private relationships he won an army of friends and admirers.
He was devoted to aquatic sports, rowing and sailing. In 1861 he was a foundation member of the SA Yacht and Rowing Club, built their first boat, and in 1877 was elected first Captain of the Port Adelaide Rowing Club. Jack became a sculler and champion oarsman. He was also a foundation member of the Semaphore Bowling Club and a leading figure in the Foresters and Rechabite Lodges at Port Adelaide.
In 1879 and 1880 he stroked the Port Adelaide crew to victory in the Champion Fours race at the New Years Day regatta. He captained the club in 1878, 1879 and 1883 and coached in 1896. At the end of his rowing career he continued to serve the SA Rowing Association as a regatta official for many years.
Born 7.1.1865, Birkenhead
Son of Thomas Cruickshank, Ship Builder of Birkenhead
Resided in the Port District and also at 13 Augusta Street, Maylands from 1903 to 1912 and finally at Military Road, Largs Bay.
He was educated in the Port district and at North Adelaide Grammar School which later became Whinham College.
He was employed by Bundey and Dashwood, Lawyers, and entered business on his own account as a solicitor at Port Adelaide in 1886, later becoming City Solicitor for the Port Adelaide Council from 1900 to 1914. He was regarded as an authority on shipping law.
In 1903 he was elected Councillor in the St Peters Corporation and in 1906 became Mayor, also from 1908 to 1910. An original member of the Tramway Trust Board he was also on the Board of Governors of the Public Library, Museum and Art Gallery from 1907 when he was appointed a representative of the Government.
Robert was also involved in many sports, rowing, football, yachting and racing.
Captain and Stroke PARC 1884 to 1890
President & Coach PARC 1890 to 1894
Secretary PA Football Club 1881
Committee PA Racing Club
He began his association with the PARC as a coxswain. Success in rowing came early when he stroked winning crews in Champion Fours in 1884, 1885, 1886 and 1889. He also stroked the winning Adelaide University eight in the interstate inter-varsity race in the Port in December 1889. He was described in 1909 as “perhaps the finest oarsman and certainly the best stroke that the State had produced” and in 1922 as “the Father of Amateur Rowing at Port Adelaide”. He officiated at numerous club and association regattas.
He died at a relatively young age in 1922. The Cruickshank Reserve in Maylands is named in his honour.
Boats and Nominees
Boats Raced by the Club
Some of the boats used in the early years did not really belong to the Club. They were either leased or privately owned by some members. In 1884 and 1885 boats named “Port Adelaide Football Club” and “Varsity” appear to have some reference to Bob Cruickshank because he was associated with both those bodies at that time and they are not mentioned again. On the other hand one newspaper report stated that they were PARC craft.
1879 PRINCE 4 1950 AJ PARHAM 4
1879 BRITTANIA 4 1952 JH CLOUSTON 8
1879 NEPTUNE 4 1956 VC CAWTE 4
1879 QUEEN 4 1956 JE OSBORNE 4
1879 VICTORIA 4 1960 RA FRANCIS 4
1880 8 1962 AC DAVIS T4
1884 PAFC 4 1963 RA WALKER 8
1884 HENRIETTA 4 1967 RK COLDWELL 2
1884 FRANKLIN 4 1969 RON SIMPSON T4
1884 VARSITY 4 1969 WW STONE 2
1884 ALEXANDRIA 4 1971 KEITH COLDWELL 4
1884 BEATRICE 2 1972 ROSS WEBB 8
1887 TRUE BLUE 4 1974 JF WARD T4
1887 SNOWDROP 2 1975 DEREK SWAN 4
1888 PORT ADELAIDE 8 1975 MERLE MARTEN T4
1890 TORRENS 4 1977 BOB LEPLEY 2
1893 WAR-I-AN 8 1978 JOHN ANDERSON 8
1894 AUSTRAL 4 1980 DORIS WARD 8
MARNEE T4 1980 MALCOLM CAMPBELL S
1909 PIYAWOLA 4 1981 DENIS BLAND 4
WIRILLA 4 1981 COLIN WILLIAMS 4
1925 LO BETTS 8 1982 BARRY NITSCHKE 2
1926 CHAS T LAWTON 4 1982 HC ROY MARTEN 4
1931 BL BOWEN T4 1985 DOUG CATHCART 2
1934 WH WALLACE 8 1985 PAUL McCULLOUGH 2
1938 HR WILKE 4 1986 FRANK SKUCE 8
1938 WS MURCH TS 1994 KERRY SAWFORD S
1939 WR LOCK T4 1996 NORM COLLINS QS
1949 MEMORIAL IV T4 1997 ALLAN HEFFERNAN 4
Lieutenant Colonel Lionel Oxborrow Betts, OBE, FRACS, MBBS
Born 27.4.1886, Streaky Bay
Son of William Henry and Elizabeth Betts of Streaky Bay
Educated at Way College, Greenhill Road, Wayville, Lionel studied and graduated in Medicine at the University of Adelaide.
Upon the outbreak of war in 1914 he enlisted as a Medical Officer with the 9th Light Horse Regiment A.I.F. which served in Egypt, Gallipoli and the desert campaigns of Sinai, Palestine and Syria. At the end of hostilities Lionel remained in the Army until 1920 to assist in the rehabilitation of inured soldiers.
After resuming civilian life he took up a general medical practice at Semaphore Road, Semaphore, and it was in this period that he became attached to the Port Adelaide Rowing Club. He held the office of Patron from 1923 to 1930. He was a generous supporter of the Club and regularly attended on Sunday mornings.
Dr Betts became one of the pioneers of orthopaedic surgery in Adelaide and worked for many years at Escourt House, Semaphore South.
It is of interest to record that the Memorial Clock Tower on the foreshore at Semaphore was unveiled by Lt Col Betts OBE on 24 May 1925 when he was President of the Semaphore RSL Sub Branch.
The Boat – L.O. Betts was a racing eight built by George Towns of Sydney. It was launched on 13 December 1924 and was christened by Mrs JH Clouston. It won SA Champion Eights in 1928, 1929 (PARC) and 1938 (Pt Pirie). It raced for King’s Cup in 1928 in Sydney and 1929 in Perth.
Charles Thomas Lawton
Born 14.6.1878, Adelaide
Son of Charles Edward and Marian Lawton of Selth Street, Albert Park, SA
Charles was educated at Port Adelaide.
Charles served his time as a wheelwright with the firm of Cox and Wihericks in Carrington Street, Adelaide.
He began rowing around 1898 when he raced as bow man in the Port Adelaide eight. Within twelve months he had moved down to No. 7 seat behind Joe Clouston for the local championship race and Intercolonial race in Melbourne in 1899. He again rowed in the Interstate eights at Port Adelaide in 1902. After Clouston retired in 1905, Charlie became stroke at PARC and was very successful in that role winning champion eights in 1907, 1908 and 1909.
In 1909 he and his brother GA (Alex) Lawton, who had been rowing with him, went farming in the Murray Mallee at Magea near Swan Reach. The 1914 drought brought an end to their venture and the brothers returned to Port Adelaide to work with their father who had started a coach building works in Commercial Road.
Charlie played a leading part in the re-establishment of the club after the Great War. Even though a crew was boated in 1920, full club organisation was not achieved until 1923 when Charlie became Captain for 1923 and 1924. He also coached in 1926.
Is major successes were:
Champion Eights 1899, 1900, 1904, 1907, 1908, 1909
Champion Fours 1900, 1907, 1909
He was made a Life Member in 1926 and continued his valuable support as a Vice President between the World Wars and well into the 1950s. He moved to live at Monash in the latter part of his life.
The boat – Chas T Lawton was a Racing Four built by J Edwards of Melbourne. It was launched on Opening Day on 5th November 1926 and was christened by Mrs AOR Tapp, Mayoress of Port Adelaide. The boats notable success was the Champion Fours of 1928.
Bertram Leaver Bowen
of 3 Railway Terrace, Alberton also 34 Gordon Street, Albert Park
Unfortunately it has not been possible to communicate with any of Bert’s relatives to obtain other personal details. He was always affectionately known in rowing circles as “Wagga”. He was a generous supporter of the PARC in the 1930s and regularly attended regattas, wherever the venue, until well into the post-war years. He always wore the badge of Life Member, Berri Rowing Club, and he is also listed as one of the early Life Members of the Port Adelaide Rowing Club from 1932.
Bert often donated trophies for races at Port regattas, one of which was a perpetual cup for maiden fours to commemorate the life of a former member he had known, Harry Blair Everett, who died in 1933.
The best tribute we can make to Bert’s memory is that everybody knew him, no matter to which club they belonged.
The boat – BL Bowen was a Tub Slide Four Clinker built by E Searles of Largs Bay and was a gift from the Ladies’ Committee. It was launched on28th March 1931 and was christened by Mrs Minchinberg.
Herman Rudolph Wilke
of 137 Grant Avenue, Toorak Gardens
Company Secretary with a business firm at Port Adelaide
Unfortunately is has not been possible to communicate with any of Herman’s relatives to obtain other personal details. Herman was a very generous supporter as a Vice President of the PARC in the 1930s. He was a modest man who preferred to work and help behind the scenes. When the Committee sought his permission to name a new boat in his honour, he at first declined saying that there were others more worthy. He was held in such high esteem that the members of the Committee decided to visit him at his home to iterate their request. He then relented and the racing four HR Wilke was launched in 1938.
Members grieved when he passed away in 1939.
The boat – HR Wilke was a Four Oared Clinker built by Harold Lounder of Adelaide. It was launched on Opening Day in 1938 and the christening details are unknown.
William Henry Wallace
Dealer of Semaphore Road, Semaphore and Esplanade, Largs Bay
Unfortunately is has not been possible to communicate with any of Bill’s relatives to obtain other personal details.
His association with the PARC began in the early thirties when his two sons, William Jnr and Richard Hamilton Wallace were active oarsmen. He was Vice Patron from 1934 until 1941 and it was through his desire for the club to obtain its first swivel rigged eight and his promise to guarantee the cost, that a new eight was acquired in 1934.
The boat – WH Wallace was a Racing Eight built by W Ninham of Adelaide at a cost of 120 pounds. It was launched on Opening Day 13th October 1934 and was christened by Mrs WH Wallace.
The first crew was G Fitzgerald (B), V Rainsford (2), AJ Parham (3), WD Lock (4), WS Murch (5), R Murch (6), T Butler (7), W Wallace (S) and R Baker (Cox).
After the traditional christening with champagne, the boat was doused with the waters of the Torrens, Murray and Port Rivers as they were the areas that she would mostly grace. This was arranged on the suggestion of Vice President, HR Wilke, and was executed by another Vice President, Mr J McKenzie.
The boat’s first important success was the winning of the Champion Maiden Eights in 1940. By 1950 the boat had become very loose at the shoulders and elsewhere, resulting in a lot of the input by the crew being wasted. She was extensively rebuilt internally by Harold Lounder of Adelaide and immediately became successful.
Winlock Samuel Murch
Born 2.3.1905, Solomontown
Second son of John H and Anna B Murch of Wills Street, Largs Bay. Husband of Lillian Jean Murch and father of Norman Winlock Murch of 18 Claughton Road, Largs Bay.
He was educated at Le Fevre Peninsula School.
Known to all as Lockie Murch he became a Master Mariner and Marine Engineer and for many years, with his brother Reg, conducted the ferry service across the Port River at the Port Adelaide – Birkenhead terminals. Upon the cessation of that service when the Birkenhead Bridge was opened in December 1940, Lockie was man-powered into the Marine Fire Service section of the SA Fire Brigade at Birkenhead. He retired from that service in 1970. He also owned the ketch “Hawthorn” engaged in the gulf trade.
It is not known exactly when Lockie began rowing with the PARC, but there is a record of him stroking a maiden four (fixed) at the Henley on Torrens Regatta in February 1925. From that time he rendered great service to the Club and occupied many positions over the following fifty years, namely,
Captain 1937, 1941, 1949
Coach 1938, 1941, 1946, 1948
Vice Patron 1971 to 1975
One of his valuable attributes was his skill as a carpenter and shipwright and in the pre-war and post-war years he did a lot of work in keeping the boats and blades operational. It is recalled that in 1949 when materials were still in short supply and membership was expanding, Lockie spliced at least a dozen broken oars so that they could be used for training.
For his valued service Lockie was elected a Life Member in 1940.
The boat – WS Murch was a Tub Scull built by Edwards & Sons of Melbourne and was launched on Opening Day 1939 and was christened by Mrs Jean Murch.
William Richard Lock
Born 5.2.1886, Terowie
Son of George (Jim) and Julia Lock of Terowie
He was educated at Broken Hill.
In his early working life he was employed as an accountant in Broken Hill but later conducted a business as a newsagent at Rose Bay, Sydney, before moving to South Australia in 1922.
He became the licensee of the Cumberland Hotel at Glanville in 1927 where he remained a very popular Mine Host for many years eventually taking his sons, David and Jack, into business after World War 2.
His interest in rowing began when the boys were actively engaged at Port Adelaide in the thirties. He became President in 1946 and held that office continuously until his death in November 1952.
He was one of the Guardians, 1940 to 1945, appointed to take care of the club affairs during the hostilities.
Bill was always a very generous and helpful supporter of the Club over a period of 27 years.
The boat – WR Lock was a Tub Four built by Harold Lounder of Adelaide and was launched on Opening Day 1939 and christened by Mrs Jessie Lock.
The boat had an outstanding run of success from the time it was launched and crewed by Ron Bruton (S), Jack Lock (3), Haydn Phillips (2), Fred Wormleighton (B) with Charlie Davis (Cox). They were never beaten as a crew. When the boat was loaned to other clubs they also enjoyed success.
The Memorial Four
This term was adopted in 1946 to identify the four members of the Virgin Eight 1940 who were known to have lost their lives on active service in World War 2, 1939-45.
There is no disrespect intended to any former members of the PARC who also gave their lives.
In memory of:
PA1816 Able Seaman Robert Leslie Hardy, HMAS Yarra. Sunk by enemy action in the Batavia area on the 4th March, 1942.
SX4420 Corporal John Henry Thomas, 2/27th Battalion, A.I.F. Killed in action at Efogi, New Guinea, on the 7th September, 1942.
407530 Pilot Officer Malcolm Eric McKiggan, RAAF. Killed in air operations in Essex, England on the 6th November, 1943.
407821 Flying Officer David Payne Croston, no. 463 Squadron, RAAF. Killed on air operations over Lille, France on the 11th May, 1944.
And other past members of PARC.
Their loss was a severe blow to a small club which had to re-establish in 1946. They were experienced man and their knowledge and expertise was sadly missed.
Bob Hardy, an active oarsman.
Jack Thomas, Captain in 1938 and 1939.
Malcolm McKiggan, Treasurer in 1939.
Dave Croston, Secretary in 1939.
Personal commemoration of these men is displayed in the club album and in the club house.
LEST WE FORGET
The boat – Memorial IV was a Tub Four built by Harold Lounder of Adelaide and was launched on Closing Day in 1949 and was christened by Mrs V Cawte.
Robert Leslie Hardy
Elder son of Leslie William and Margaret Hardy of Baker Street, Birkenhead
He was educated at Le Fevre Peninsula and Largs Bay Schools.
He was employed by Shell Oil Company, Birkenhead until the time of his mobilisation by the RAN.
Bob was an active sportsman interested in weight lifting, boxing and who also played football with Exeter in the Amateur League. He was a keen motor cyclist and travelled by that means to country regattas during his periods of rowing with PARC in 1934/35 and again in 1939/40 season when he occupied the No. 5 seat in the Champion Maiden Eight. He had also been a member of the RANR at the Birkenhead Depot for a number of years before the war.
He enlisted as an Able Seaman PA1816 and trained at Flinders Naval Depot from 31st August 1940 and commenced sea duty in HMAS Yarra on 3rd February 1941. He saw active service in the Arabian Sea, Persian Gulf, Indian Ocean and the Netherland East Indies. He was lost at sea when HMAS Yarra was sunk by enemy action out from Batavia on 4th March 1942.
Bob was a jovial, good natured fellow among his club mates in and out of the boat. His loss to the PARC was recorded on the plaque attached to the Tub Four “Memorial IV”. His life is commemorated at the State War Memorial, Adelaide and on the Naval Memorial at the Hoe, Plymouth, England.
John Henry Thomas
Son of Henry and Elizabeth Driffield Thomas of Selth Street, Albert Park.
He was educated at Alberton School.
Jack was employed by Wallaroo Mount Lyell Fertiliser Company, Birkenhead until the time of his enlistment.
Jack began rowing in 1936 and was elected Captain in the 1938/39 and 1939/40 seasons. He rowed in fours and stroked a maiden eight in the 1938/39 season.
He joined the 2/27th Infantry Battalion, 2nd AIF, which trained at Woodside, SA, before embarking on the Mauretania in Melbourne for the Middle East on 21st October, 1940. They were disembarked at Suez on the 24th November, 1940 and went to Julis, Palestine, before proceeding to the campaign in Syria against the Vichy French forces.
The Battalion returned to Australia in March 1942 and he caught up with other club members who were also home on leave. He made light of the soldiers hardships in his inimitable cheery style as he recounted his experiences in the Middle East. After only a few weeks the Battalion was despatched to New Guinea and took up positions on the Kokoda Trail on 30th August, 1942.
Jack was killed in action against the Japanese at Efogi Hill on the 7th September, 1942 and is now interred at the Bomona War Cemetery, Port Moresby, Plot A1E18.
Jack was always a cheerful and enthusiastic personality. He encouraged all around him and was extremely popular among all club members of that era.
Pilot Officer Malcolm Eric McKiggan
Born 12.6.1913, Semaphore
Son of Finlay and Margaret McKiggan of 29 Dudley Street, Semaphore.
He was educated at Scotch College, Mitcham from 1927 to 1931 and later obtained diplomas in Accountancy.
He was employed by Bennett and Fisher, Adelaide until the time of his enlistment in the RAAF.
Malcolm did not take up the sport of rowing. His interest in the PARC came from his association with friends who were members. He had been an excellent sportsman whilst at Scotch College.
First cricket XI 1930-31
First football XVIII 1930-31
Swimming team 1930-31
College Cadet Corps 1931
His talents were later recognised by the Port Adelaide Football Club but, unfortunately, his playing career was ended prematurely by a leg injury.
He was Club Treasurer for the 1939/40 season. A quiet man, Malcolm performed his duties in like manner and was friendly towards all members.
He volunteered for service with the RAAF, was accepted, placed on the Reserve before August 1940, and eventually enlisted on the 9th November, 1940. He completed flying training at Cunderdin and Geraldton, Western Australia, where he graduated as Pilot on 27th June, 1941. After operational training he served in the Middle East was with 40 Squadron for five months in 1942. After returning to England in December 1942, Malcolm was engaged in flying instruction at 27 Operational Training Unit when he was killed in air operations at Little Waldon in Essex on 6th November, 1943. Malcolm had passed through all the RAAF ranks and was commissioned on the 25th May, 1943. He is interred in the Brookwood Military Cemetery, Woking, Surrey, England.
Flying Officer David Payne Croston
Son of Roland John and Alice Maude Croston of 16 Collins Street, Exeter, and husband of Kathleen Stalby Croston of Kensington Park.
He was educated at St Peters College, Adelaide.
He was employed by Walter & Morris, Timber merchants, Port Adelaide until the time of his enlistment.
His interest in rowing undoubtedly developed during his years at college and resulted in him joining the PARC in 1928. He held the position of Assistant Secretary in 1938/39 and became Secretary in 1939/40.
He volunteered for service with the RAAF, was accepted and placed on the Reserve before August 1940, and was eventually enlisted on 6th January 1941. He trained as an Air Gunner and was commissioned on graduation. During his training at No. 1 Wireless Air Gunners’ School at Ballarat, Victoria, Dave organised rowing training for RAAF personnel. They were coached by Wing Commander C.O. Fairbairn (nephew of Steve, former Cambridge oarsman) and were successful in winning eights and fours at the RAAF Regatta held in Melbourne in June 1941. He was embarked for Britain and served with No. 463 Squadron when he was posted missing in air operations over Lille, France, on 11th May 1944. He is interred at Wevelgem cemetery, West Flanders, between Menin and Courtrai, where his grave, with those of a few other Australian airmen, is regularly tended by Belgian airmen.
Dave was Secretary extraordinaire and an outstanding organiser. While he was associated with club management he obtained the support of many businessmen in the Port Adelaide area and fostered their patronage. As a result three new craft were launched between 1939 and 1940. He endeavoured to develop tradition by gathering and displaying historic photographs of Port Adelaide crews within the club room. Other projects that he organised were the beginning of scrap books for 1924-29 and 1934-40 and also a club photographic album up to 1939.
Alfred Justin Parham
Born 11.1.1896, Birkenhead
Son of John and Emily Parham of Robert Street, Birkenhead and he later resided at Anthony & Windsor Street, Largs Bay.
He was educated at Le Fevre Peninsula School and SA School of Mines, Adelaide.
He became a tailor after serving his apprenticeship with AJ Brown, Men’s Outfitter, St Vincent Street, Port Adelaide, and was always known to his family and friends as Justy or Carty.
He enlisted in the AIF in the Great War at a very young age and served with the Light Horse in Egypt and the desert campaigns of Sinai, Palestine and Syria, including the epic attack on Beersheba.
After the war Justy went into partnership with Perce Gordon, tailoring in Commercial Road, Port Adelaide, near the Newmarket Hotel. As the effects of the great depression lifted he acquired his own shop in Commercial Road near Ezywalkin Ltd. where he traded until his retirement in the late 1960s.
Justy was a man of many interests. He was fond of various sports, football, boxing, swimming and tennis but his main love was rowing and the Port Adelaide Rowing Club. Always a staunch advocate of decorum and good sportsmanship at all times, it is thought he began rowing, mainly in fours, in the 1920s. It is known that he coached at the Club in 1930. He was ever ready to assist in the running of the Club in whatever capacity was required and he occupied the position of President from 1953 until 1958, a period when the Club’s oarsmen were achieving outstanding success.
The boat – AJ Parham was a Racing Four built in 1909 and named Piyawola. Later, around 1923 it was renamed Wirilla. For many years in the 1930s it was rarely used, but after World War 2, when extra boats were needed for training new members, the boat was renovated. It was again renamed in 1950 and was christened by Mrs O Parham.
Joseph Harvey Clouston
Born 2.8.1870, Birkenhead
Son of William and Margaret Clouston of Wells Street, Birkenhead
Joe served his time as a Boilermaker with the Etna Iron Work and worked at the Government Workshops at Islington but later was engaged for many years in the Engineer-in Chief’s Department of the SA Government.
He was recognised as a staunch unionist and served on the Trades & Labour Council. He was always interested in Local Government and held office in the Port Adelaide Council for forty years as a Councillor, Alderman and Mayor from 1912 to 1916.
Joe rowed his first race as bow man in a Youth Four at the Port Adelaide regatta on 1st January 1885 when he was fourteen years old. He began rowing in eights behind Bob Cruickshank in the 1880s and became Stroke of the Port eight in 1891. He stroked winning Champion Eights in 1899, 1900, 1901, 1904 and Champion Fours in 1892, 1894, 1900 and 1901. In that period he also distinguished himself as a Sculler in winning the Championship in 1891, 1892, 1894, 1895, 1896 and 1899. He also stroked the Port eight in the Inter-Colonial race in Melbourne in 1899 and the SA eight in the Australian Championship in 1902. Joe also served the PARC and SARA as a club and regatta official for a very long time including the years of World War 2 as a Guardian of the PARC from 1940 to 1946. Offices he held were
Vice Patron 1946-1948
Captain 1899, 1906, 1910
Secretary 1889, 1925, 1926
A determined and respected competitor, Joe was acknowledged as such in his own time. He was awarded Life Membership in 1906 and lived to enjoy that privilege until 1949, a record term which will stand unchallenged for a long time. His record of personal success seems unparalleled in the history of the club and established him as the most successful oarsman at Port Adelaide.
The boat – JH Clouston was a Racing Eight built by George Towns of Sydney for the Sydney University Rowing Club from whom it was purchased for 500 pounds in 1952. It was launched on Opening Day 1952 and was christened by Mrs A Fotheringham. It was successful in the King’s Cup at Port Adelaide when it was loaned to the Western Australian crew in 1955.
Vincent Charles Cawte
Born 18.1.1901, Wallaroo Mines
Son of Fred James and Mary Cawte of Wallaroo Mines and husband of Amy and father of Lloyd.
He was educated at Wallaroo Mines and Port Pirie schools. On leaving school Vin went to work with his father who had been injured in a mining accident at the Wallaroo Mines and was unable to resume working at that vocation. They worked at Morgan around 1920 servicing the river trade, off-loading paddle steamers and conveying cargo to the railway yards for onward distribution. A family carrying business was later established at Murray Bridge. In 1932 Vin moved to Adelaide and began a carrying service from Adelaide to Murray Bridge.
He became interested in rowing at Port Adelaide when his son, Lloyd, began rowing there in 1948 and began a period of very valuable service to the PARC. He first became a Vice President, then Senior Vice President and President from 1959 to 1961, Vice Patron from 1949 to 1953 and Patron in 1954 and1955.
Vin assisted the Club in many ways with is vehicles and equipment, which brought considerable advantages to the active oarsmen of that period, in that they were able to race in the boats they used for training. He first improvised a rack system for trucks which enabled the club eight and fours to be conveyed on one load for regattas at any venue. When the shift from Birkenhead to Snowden’s Beach was planned, he made his workshop and equipment available for the fabrication of the framework for the new building.
Apart from his assistance in engineering matters, Vin regularly attended club meetings to offer experienced advice in matters being considered by the members or committees. He was appointed Liaison Officer for the Western Australian crew when the King’s Cup was rowed at Port Adelaide in 1955, and had the satisfaction of seeing his charges winning in the boat loaned by Port Adelaide. The visitors made a point of stressing the value, to them, of Vin’s co-operation and assistance.
For his excellent service Vin was awarded Life Membership of the PARC in 1956 and the members were disappointed that he was not spared to enjoy that award for a longer period.
The boat – VC Cawte was a Racing Four built by Harold Lounder of Adelaide and was launched on Opening Day 1956 and christened by Mrs A Cawte.
James Edmond Osborne
Born 29.9.1880, Port Adelaide
Only son of Alexander Mann Osborne and Isabella Osborn of Dale Street, Port Adelaide
He was educated at a private school at Semaphore.
He was employed all his working life by the SA Stevedoring Company at Port Adelaide and that engagement extended right up until a few days before his death – a period of almost 75 years.
Known to all his fellows as Jock, he began rowing with Port Adelaide near the turn of the century and is recorded as winning in the maiden class in 1904 then followed years of success in fours and eights. In the latter he mainly rowed at No. 7 in combination with Chas. T Lawton when the crew won the Champion Eights from 1907 to 1909 and in 1911.
The son of a master mariner and not large in stature, Jock was a tremendously strong man. He possessed a pleasant character and the unique ability to maintain friendships in every age group. He had other interests in sailing and golf, having been Secretary of the SA Yacht Squadron and a foundation member of the Grange Golf Club, where he continued to play regularly into his 88th year.
Jock lived for many years at the British Hotel, Port Adelaide. It is said his attachment reached the stage that he became one of the conditions of sale when the leasehold of the hotel changed hands.
He maintained interest throughout his life in rowing and the Port Adelaide Club where he held the office of Vice Patron from 1954 to 1967 and officiated at the presentation of trophies in 1969. His fine example inspired love for rowing within his family with two sons, two grandsons and three granddaughters all having taken up the sport in their turn.
His major successes were
Champion Eights 1907, 1908, 1909 and 1911
Champion Fours 1906
Interstate Eights 1909 Brisbane
Jock was elected a Life Member in 1952.
The boat – JE Osborne was a Racing Four built by Sargent & Burton of Sydney.
Reginald Arthur Francis
Born 9.7.1914, Broken Hill
Son of John William and Hannah Louisa Francis of 14 Alsop Street, Semaphore
He was educated at Le Fevre Peninsula School.
He was employed at the Government Printing Office, Adelaide from 1929 until the time of his enlistment in the RAN in 1940.
He trained as a seaman at Flinders Naval Depot, Victoria and was assigned to sea duty in 1941 aboard HMAS Hobart. After active service in the Indian and Pacific Oceans he later served on HMAS Australia and Barcoo. After demobilisation in 1946 he resumed with the Government Printing Office until 1970 when he transferred to the Department of Marine & Harbours, Port Adelaide where he retired in 1975.
Reg began rowing at Birkenhead in 1930 when a “Learn to Row” campaign was arranged to foster membership after the retirement of many experienced oarsmen from the Salkeld era of the 1920s. He is especially regarded for a great personal effort in 1946 when he was called upon to row in Champion Senior Fours at short notice and without any training. He enjoyed most success in rowing in his capacity as Coach in 1939 with his first title win in Champion Maiden Eights in 1940 and in the post war years of the 50s when Port crews were winning often. His first taste of interstate competition came in 1951 when he was invited to coach the Adelaide University crew in the Universities Interstate Regatta on the Derwent River, Hobart. This was followed by his selection as SARA Coach for the SA composite crews of 1952 and 1953 in the King’s Cup races on the Nepean, Sydney and Swan, Perth.
Reg always preferred to coach a crew as a body rather than indulge in individual improvement. He was not an outspoken mentor. He had his own quiet way of letting his crew know what he wanted and how he expected them to go about reaching that level. His own manner was quiet and serious which had the effect of developing concentration and desire to produce the nest for him. He was always well liked and respected in the Port club and in rowing circles generally and thoroughly deserved to enjoy the successes of the latter years after his long period of devotion to rowing at Port Adelaide.
In recognition of his valued service Reg was awarded Life Membership in 1946.
The boat – RA Francis was a Regulation Four built by George Towns of Sydney at a cost of 371 pounds and was launched on 16th October 1960 and christened by Ms Doris Stokes.
Alfred Charles Davis
Born 15.12.1922, Peterhead
Son of Charles Henry and Eileen Winifred Davis of Fletcher Road, Peterhead.
He was educated at Largs Bay and Le Fevre Peninsula Schools.
Charlie was first employed in the Port Adelaide City Council office until he enlisted in December 1941. After demobilisation he resumed employment with the Vacuum Oil Company, Largs Bay, and remained with that company until his retirement on account of ill health.
He was affectionately known within is family as Bluey and among many of his school mates as Chook. He began with the PARC as a coxswain on Opening Day 1938. His first notable success was to steer the first PARC maiden four to win the Arnold Cup at Mannum in January 1940. This was followed by the Maiden Eight Championship in 1940.
Charlie resumed with the Club after World War 2 and in the years that followed he notched many major successes in championships of various classes to make him the most successful coxswain in the history of the PARC.
His bright chirpy nature made him well known to many within rowing circles. He was a strong advocate for the introduction of women’s rowing at Port Adelaide and helped with the preparation of their early crews.
He was elected a Life Member of the PARC in 1957 and a Life Member of the SAWRA in 1979.
His record of major successes is
Champion Maiden Eight 1940
Champion Junior Eight 1957
Champion Senior Four 1952, 1953, 1954
Champion Junior Four 1953, 1957, 1958
Champion Senior Four 1950, 1954
State Coxswain, King’s Cup races 1951 (Brisbane), 1952 (Sydney), 1953 (Perth) & 1954 (Hobart)
The boat – AC Davis was a Tub Four built by AH Wallace of Semaphore and was launched on 17th November 1962 and christened by Mrs Dawn Davis.
Roy Albert Walker
Elder son of Cecil Percy and Janet Louise Walker of 94 Fletcher Road, Peterhead.
He was educated at Largs Bay School.
He was employed as a hairdresser having learned the trade from his father before he opened his Pennington business, which he operated until his enlistment in the RAN in June 1942.
Roy trained at Flinders Naval Depot, Victoria, as a Stoker and began sea duty on TSS Canberra and later served on HMAS Adelaide. He was demobilised in mid 1946.
He began rowing with PARC in 1938, and at age 16 he was invited to trial for the King’s Cup crew of 1939. He rowed at No. 4 in the winning Champion Maiden Eight crew of 1940. He resumed rowing in 1946 and continued until 1950.
Roy was elected Captain in 1947 and 1948, President from 1962 to 1965 and also held the office of Vice President. During his period as President, when car raffles were being conducted to raise finance, Roy played a big part in the sale of tickets through his business contacts. He has always possessed an extremely easy going nature and consequently he mixed well and gained co-operation from anyone with whom he came into contact. In the years that followed his active membership Roy maintained contact with the Club by frequently attending club functions.
The boat – RA Walker was a Racing Eight built by George Towns of Sydney for $1500 including blades. It was launched on Opening Day on 6th October 1963 and was christened by Mrs Brenda Walker. Its first crew was RA Walker, A Smithson, KL Coldwell, R Webb, J Ward, NM Collins, DW Martin and AC Davis (Cox).
Ronald Kenneth Coldwell
Son of Kenneth James and Flora Coldwell of 22 Persic Street, Largs North.
He was educated at Largs Bay School.
He was employed by the Shell Oil Company, Birkenhead.
Ron was still serving with the Army when he joined PARC soon after his brother, Keith, in 1946. He competed until 1959 and his most notable successes were
Champion Senior Eights 1952, 1953, 1954
King’s Cup selection 1950 (Melbourne)
He has devoted a substantial portion of his life maintaining active attachment to the Club for a period of fifty years and has served well in many capacities.
President 1991 to 1995
Captain 1955 to 1958 and 1966
Bar Manager for more than 30 years
Ron’s service to the Club can best be described by the words, determination, persistence and dedication. In February 1951 he entered a race for maiden sculls in an effort to score premiership points for the PARC. The weather was very rough and his boat, an open tub scull, was swamped three times on the way to the start.
In appreciations for his continuous service Ron was awarded Life Membership in 1966.
The boat – RK Coldwell was a Racing Pair built by Sargent & Burton and was launched on 30th April 1967 and was christened by Mrs Elaine Coldwell. Its first crew was RK Coldwell and KL Coldwell.
Son of William Henry and Dulcie May Simpson of 57 Wattle Avenue, Royal Park.
He was educated at Alberton and Le Fevre Technical High Schools.
He learned the trade of electro-plating and worked for the firm TRW Car Pty. Ltd. of Hendon for a very long period.
He began rowing with the PARC in 1948 and since that time has maintained a continuous period of attachment to the club. He still competes in veterans’ events.
His most notable successes were
Champion Maiden Eights 1951
Champion Junior Eights 1952
Champion Senior Eights 1952, 1953, 1954, 1958
Champion Junior Fours 1953
Champion Senior Fours 1954
King’s Cup selection 1952 (Sydney), 1953 (Perth) and 1957 (Brisbane)
Ron has also shouldered a lot of the work of managing the club. Offices he held were
President 1985 to 1987
Captain 1967 to 1969
Secretary 1966, 1984
Treasurer 1986 to 1992
He has given unswerving dedication to rowing since he came to the Port club. As mentioned elsewhere, he worked tirelessly to establish the boat house at Snowden’s Beach and he has continued his efforts in supporting its management to the present time. Ron has been the “quiet Achiever” and ever ready to step forward when there was work to be done to improve the club facilities.
He was elected a Life Member in 1969.
The boat – Ron Simpson was a Tub Four built by Harold Lounder of Adelaide for $700 and was launched on 30th March 1969 and christened by Mrs Audrey Simpson.
Warren Wallis Stone
Son of Richard and Merrill Stone of Stroud Street, Cheltenham.
He was educated at Pennington, Croydon & Le Fevre Technical Schools.
Warren learned the trade of Fitting & Turning with Miller Engineering at Kilkenny and worked at the trade with the Electricity Trust of SA for several years. Later he went into business on his own account and conducted newsagencies and delicatessens in the suburban area.
Before he came to the PARC, Warren had played baseball with the Port Adelaide BC. He switched to rowing and arrived at Jenkins Street with three team mates, Warren Thomas, Graham Westmoreland and another whose name is now not known. They began in fours under the guidance of Reg Francis in 1948 and later advanced to the Club eight. Warren was interested in management and administration and he contributed greatly in those functions in a period when the Club was developing rapidly. He held the following offices with distinction.
President 1966 to 1968 & 1972 to 1974
Secretary 1961 to 1963
Manager King’s Cup Crew 1969 (Bundaberg)
He later transferred his attention to administration with the SA Rowing Association and continued there until he died in 1976. His departure was a sad loss to rowing in South Australia.
The boat – WW Stone was a Racing Pair and was launched in 1969 and christened by Mrs Erica Stone.
Keith Leonard Coldwell
Born 27.2.1928, Largs North
Son of Kenneth James and Flora Coldwell of 22 Persic Street, Largs North.
He was educated at Largs Bay and Woodville High Schools.
Keith learned the trade of Fitter and conducted his own business in a service station at Kilkenny for sixteen years before moving to the Department of Marine and Harbours, Glanville, where he was Workshop Superintendent for eighteen years.
With Derek Swan he was introduced as a new member very early in 1946 when the club was reforming after World War 2. He stroked the first crew to race for Port Adelaide at the Opening Regatta 1946/47 season, which was to prove the beginning of an illustrious career until 1956. His most notable successes were
Champion Senior Fours 1951
Champion Senior Eights 1952 to 1954
King’s Cup selection 1948 (Hobart), 1949 (Murray Bridge), 1950 (Melbourne), 1951 (Brisbane) & 1952 (Sydney)
Keith also rendered very valuable service to the Club as
President 1970 & 1971
Coach 1951 to 1953
Committeeman for more than 10 years
He also held the position of Secretary, Past Oarsmen’s Association for five years. Keith still row’s regularly and has been active with the Club for fifty years.
His dedication was recognised by the award of Life Membership in 1970.
The boat – KL Coldwell was a Racing Four built by Sargent & Burton of Sydney and was launched on Opening Day 1971 and was christened by Mrs Lenore Coldwell.
Ross Samuel Webb
Son of Frank and Harriet Webb of 9 Helen Street, Pennington.
He was educated at Pennington and Thebarton Technical Schools.
Ross learned the trade of Fitter and Turner and worked with General Motors Holden at Woodville for thirty seven years on the Production and Production Engineering staff.
He began rowing in 1947 and competed until 1956. His most notable success were
Champion Senior Eights 1952, 1954
King’s Cup selection 1952 (Sydney)
Ross also rendered very valuable service as a Committeeman for more than thirty years and occupied the position of Chairman of Committee as well as Club Chairman. He played a very valuable role as Organiser/Supervisor for the construction of the new club house building at Snowden’s Beach in the period 1958 to 1960.
In addition he has served the SARA as
Chairman Regatta Committee 5 years
Chairman Executive Committee 8 years
Regatta Official 20 years
Ross also had the pleasure and satisfaction of seeing his two sons progressing in rowing with the PARC. His value to the Club was marked by the award of Life Membership in 1977.
The boat – Ross Webb was a Racing Eight built by George Towns of Sydney for $2400. It was launched on 22nd October 1972 and was christened by Mrs Kaye Webb. Its first crew was R Webb, A Smithson, K Coldwell, R Lepley, C Williams, F Skuce, J Ward, D Swan and A Ward (Cox).
This boat proved fast but difficult to control by most crews. In the late 1970s it was sold to Underdale TAFE and was replaced by a more manageable used boat which was named Ross Webb II.
Jack Frederick Ward
Born 19.12.1930, Queenstown, SA.
Son of Roy and Clara Ward of 36 Avro Avenue, Hendon.
He was educated at Alberton and Le Fevre Technical High Schools.
Jack was mostly employed in the Port Adelaide area and mainly as a Plant Operator with the Department of Marine and Harbours.
He began rowing with PARC in 1948 stroking a Lightweight Four crew before his inclusion in a Maiden Eight. He remained in competition until 1961 and still rows regularly with other past members. His most notable successes were
Champion Maiden Eight 1950
Champion Junior Eight 1952
In maintaining a continuous attachment to the Club Jack rendered a wonderful record of service to Port Adelaide and SA rowing as a delegate and officiating at regattas. Offices that he held were
President 1978 to 1980
Captain 1972, 1974, 1975
Delegate & Committeeman
State President Past Oarsmen’s Association
National President Past Oarsmen’s Association
Among his talents Jack had a flair for broadcasting race descriptions and he performed that duty in a very capable manner at various locations, thereby adding colour and interest to the events over a period of thirty years. Jack also had the pleasure of seeing his sons progressing in rowing with PARC.
In recognition of his service he was awarded Life Membership in 1973. Jack was a very dedicated member and official.
The boat – Jack Ward was a Tub Four built by Harold Lounder of Adelaide for $800. It was launched on Opening Day 1974 and was christened by Mrs Doris Ward.
Derek Raymond Swan
Born 3.8.1927, Adelaide
Son of John Thomas Donithorne and Lillian Mildred Swan of Richmond Road, Keswick.
He was educated at Keswick and Port Pirie High Schools.
Derek has always been engaged in the retail confectionery trade and was self employed for a period of fifteen years before accepting a position with Allbrand Confectionery, Stepney.
He came to the PARC very soon after rowing was re-established in 1946 and remained actively competing until 1963.
Derek has rendered a remarkable record of service to rowing at Port Adelaide and to the SA Rowing Association, namely
President 1982 to 1984
Treasurer 1967 to 1971
Committeeman 1950 to 1984
Delegate 1972 to 1984
Elected Member SARA 1973 to 1983
Chairman SARA Regatta Committee 1973 to 1983
In recognition of his devotion to the sport and Club he was awarded a Life Membership in 1984. He still attends the club regularly, which is remarkable considering the from his home to Snowden’s Beach, and rows whenever it is possible.
A very dedicated member and a fine example to young oarsmen.
The boat – Derek Swan was a Racing Four built by Sargent & Burton of Sydney and was launched on Opening Day 1975 and was christened by Mrs F Swan.
Merle Honor Marten
Born 3.11.1915, Cheltenham, SA
Daughter of Herbert John and Ethel Una Marshall of Semaphore Road, Semaphore and wife of HC Roy Marten.
She was educated at Le Fevre Peninsula, Adelaide Technical High School and SA School of Arts & Crafts. She was trained in Engineering Drawing and Public Speaking with the Workers’ Educational Association.
Merle had a wide and varied business career covering Commercial Art, Commercial Advertising, Engineering Tracing and Draughting, Secretarial and partnership and directorship with Poly Products Ltd. During World War 2 she joined the staff at General Motors Holden, Woodville, and was engaged in the Body Engineering Drawing room. Later she assisted in the early stages with the design of the first Holden car.
From 1969 to 1987, as Mayoress of the City of Port Adelaide, Merle assumed a heavy load of community charitable, welfare and recreational commitments. The list of organisations and clubs which she was involved is far too extensive to record here. In recognition of the support she gave she holds six Life Memberships and three Certificates of Merit. In her time the Mayoress’ Charity Fetes raised almost $100,000 for local bodies and she is still Patron of four organisations.
A much travelled lady, having visited 38 different countries, Merle considers that the two most memorable occasions in her experience were the visit to Buckingham Palace in 1981 to see Roy’s investiture and in 1986 to be entertained aboard HMY “Britannia” at Port Adelaide.
The Merle Marten Hostel and Nursing Home and Marten Village for the Aged at Largs North will serve as a perpetual memorial to the work of Merle and Roy.
The boat – Merle Marten was a Tub Four built by Harold Lounder of Adelaide and was launched on 21st December 1975 and was christened by Mrs Merle H Marten.
Born 1.1.1932, St Peters, SA
Son of Alfred Harold and Dorothy Eileen Lepley.
He was educated at Le Fevre Peninsula and Le Fevre Technical Schools.
For many years Bob was employed in the technical field as a Boilermaker Welder before becoming a Sales Representative and Sales Manager.
He began rowing in 1950 and competed until 1956. His most notable successes were
Champion Maiden Eights 1951 & 1952
Champion Junior Fours 1952 & 1953
Champion Senior Eight 1952 & 1953
King’s Cup selection 1953 (Perth), 1955 (Adelaide)
Bo has rendered very valuable service to the Club as
Treasurer 1972 to 1976, 1979 & 1980
Secretary 1986 & 1987
In recognition of his efforts and value to the Club he was awarded a Life Membership in 1986.
He is now conveniently located to Snowden’s Beach, attends the Club regularly and rows whenever it is possible.
The boat – Bob Lepley was a Racing Pair built by Sargent & Burton of Sydney and was launched on 26th February 1977 and was christened by Mrs F Lepley.
John William Anderson
Son of James William and Winifred Ruth Anderson of 10 Sandwell Street, Peterhead.
He was educated at Marist Brother’s College, Alberton.
John learned the trade of Fitting and Turning and eventually became a Marine Engineer. Later he began employment with the Electricity Trust of SA.
He joined the PARC in 1960 and although he did not row competitively, he served the Club well as Assistant Secretary in 1964 & 1965 and as Bar Manager from 1968 to 1980.
Jack was elected a Life Member in 1989 for his valuable service.
The boat – John Anderson was a Racing Eight built by Sargent & Burton of Sydney and was launched in 1978 and was christened by Mrs W Anderson.
Doris Violet Mae Ward
Born 6.5.1931, Broken Hill
Daughter of Cameron and Gladys Grenvold of 91 Hookings Terrace, Woodville Gardens and wife of Jack Frederick Ward of 36 Avro Avenue, Hendon.
Doris learned the trade of tailoress and he was employed mainly at the Alberton Primary School and the Woodville District Council.
She became interested in the PARC in 1953 and in 1964 when it was decided to form a Ladies’ Auxiliary, Doris was elected as the first President and subsequently held the position for twenty years. She led a team of willing workers who raised money at special functions to provide equipment for the new club house as well as rowing blades and boats. Some of the functions organised were Melbourne Cup luncheons, Mannequin Parades, PARC Balls, Presidential Dinners, Regatta Stalls, Hat Parades and Car Rallies.
In 1976 the Men’s Committee decided to name a boat after one of the Club ladies and asked the Auxiliary to submit their nomination. Doris says she felt doubly honoured when he name was subsequently put forward. First, that the men had provided the opportunity to recognise the work done by the Auxiliary ladies and second, that he fellow workers had chosen her to receive the honour.
The boat – Doris Ward was a Racing Eight acquired from Scotch College, Adelaide and was launched on the 16th February 1980 and was christened by Doris.
Robert Malcolm Campbell
Born 27.3.1931, Yenda, NSW
Son of Robert and Isabel Campbell of 17 Kenmare Street, Taperoo
He was educated in Victoria, Largs Bay, Adelaide Technical and Clare High Schools.
Malcolm was employed mainly in clerical positions.
He began rowing with PARC in 1950 and continued until 1962. In that time his main successes were
Champion Junior Eight 1957
Champion Junior Four 1957
He also occupied the following offices
Secretary 1953, 1959, 1960, 1970, 1991
SARA Regatta official
Malcolm was awarded Life Membership in 1997 in recognition of his long service.
The boat – Malcolm Campbell is a Racing Scull built by Willie Hay. This boat was privately owned before it was acquired by the Club and it was launched in 1980 and was christened by Mrs H Stopp.
Denis William Bland
Born 10.4.1940, Naracoorte
Son of Clarence and Ella Bland of Sandwell Street, Peterhead
He was educated at Naracoorte, Le Fevre and Le Fevre Technical Schools.
Denis was apprenticed by the SA Railways and learned the trade of Diesel Fitter. He later worked with Pearce Transport and the Marine & Harbours Department.
Denis began with the PARC in the 1960s but did not row competitively. He turned his talent to management and had the distinction of serving in the position of Secretary for ten years plus a year as Treasurer.
Secretary 1972 to 1975, 1977 to 1980, 1982 & 1983
For his efforts Denis was awarded Life Membership in 1989.
The boat – Denis Bland was a Racing Four built by Sargent & Burton of Sydney and was launched in October 1981 and was christened by Mrs Josie Bland.
Colin Thomas Williams
Born 27.12.1926, Port Pirie
Son of Thomas Henry and Ethel May Williams of Yongala, SA
He was educated at Mannum, Ceduna and Quorn High Schools.
Colin learned the trade of Electrician and later became Personnel Manager at General Motors Holden, Woodville.
He began rowing at PARC in 1947 and soon won a seat in crews selected for eight oared events. However his major success was
Champion Senior Fours 1950
Colin put a lot of effort back into the Club after he stopped competing and he occupied the following positions
President 1975 to 1977
Secretary 1967 to 1969
Committeeman A number of years
He became the Clubs’ “trouble shooter” and was often assigned to pursue contentious matters which, perhaps, others would not have relished.
He was awarded Life Membership in 1984.
The Club lost a valued member when Colin died at a relatively young age.
The boat – CT Williams was a Racing Four built by Sargent & Burton of Sydney and was launched in 1981 and was christened by Mrs Tyra Williams.
Barry Lawrence Nitschke
Born 18.9.1935, Renmark
Son of Herman Arthur and Margaret Veronica Nitschke of Dunn Street, Semaphore.
He was educated at St Josephs School, Semaphore.
Barry worked in the country until he was inducted for National Service in 1955. He became a mechanical operator and worked with SA Harbours Board from 1962 until 1982.
He was introduced to the PARC in 1974 by Jack Ward who was a work mate at that time, and although he did not take up rowing competitively, he gave very good service as a worker, holding positions as Assistant Treasurer, Bar Assistant and Vice President.
The boat – Barry Nitschke is a Coxless Racing Pair built by Sargent & Burton of Sydney and was launched on 17th October 1982 and was christened by Mrs Eileen Nitschke.
Squadron Leader, Harold Charles Roy Marten, CBE, MID, K.St.J, JP
Born 5.4.1907, Alberton
Son of Harold Charles and Phoebe Marten of Minna Terrace, Semaphore South.
He was educated at Port Adelaide School and after winning a scholarship accepted a position as student teacher at the school.
He later relinquished school teaching and opened sports stores in St Vincent Street and Semaphore Road before joining the Vacuum Oil Company as a trainee draughtsman. He remained with that company until he enlisted in 1941. Roy was recruited by the RAAF for service with the Royal Air Force. He was sent to Singapore in 1941 for training and was commissioned as a Pilot Officer on graduation. He subsequently served in Burma, China, and India and returned to Burma when that country was re-occupied. He returned to Australia in 1945 and retired from the Air Force on 27th November 1946. He resumed working with the Vacuum Oil Company but later joined Sims Metal in a management capacity.
In the 1960s Roy became interested in Local Government and served as a Councillor for 4 years, an Alderman for 4 years before being elected as Mayor of Port Adelaide. He occupied that position from 1969 until 1987.
During that period Roy performed the duties in a very energetic manner. He gave tremendous support to sporting bodies and many kinds of other organisations, too mnay in number to be listed in this limited space. One example was that he was President of the Port Adelaide Division of the St John Ambulance Brigade for 21 years. In recognition of his work he was awarded five Life Memberships, Honorary Memberships and a Certificate of Merit.
Roy was Patron of the PARC from 1969 until 1986 and Vice Patron in 1987. During that period he gave the Club every possible assistance and generous financial support. He always attended club functions whenever he was not otherwise engaged.
The boat – HC Roy Marten was a Racing Four built by Sargent & Burton of Sydney and was launched on the 31st October 1982 and was christened by Mrs Merle Marten.
Douglas Steele Cathcart
Born 30.10.1938, North Adelaide
Son of Douglas and Doris Thelma Cathcart of 13 Rosslyn Street, Largs Bay.
He was educated at Largs Bay and Woodville High Schools.
Doug was employed as Accounts Supervisor with the Electricity Trust of SA.
Doug began rowing with PARC in 1958 and continued until 1965. His most notable successes were
Champion Maiden Eight 1960
Champion Junior Eight 1960
Champion Lightweight Four 1960
Interstate Lightweight Four 1960
(Penrith Cup, Launceston)
In addition to rowing Doug served in a number of offices, namely
Treasurer 1980 to 1985
Committeeman 1959 for more than 10 years
The boat – Doug Cathcart was a Racing Pair built by Sargent & Burton of Sydney and was launched on the 20th January 1985 and was christened by Mrs Jane Cathcart.
Born 10.12.1955, Glenelg
Son of Paul Newman McCullough and Patricia Neville McCullough of Elsie Street, Glenelg
He was educated at Pulteney Grammar School and University of Adelaide Law School.
Paul’s profession is as a Public Servant.
Paul apparently came to the PARC at the time when some boys who had rowed at Pulteney Grammar School moved into senior rowing at the Port. He began coaching PARC crews in the 1980/81 season and was elected Senior Coach in 1981 and 1982. Between 1981 and 1983 he coached several crews to SA Championship victories, namely, Junior Eights (2), Lightweight Eight, Junior Four, Junior Pair, Senior and Junior Sculls.
His rowing background before coming to Snowden’s Beach is not known and unfortunately, a request for further personal information was not successful.
The boat – Paul McCullough was a Racing Pair and was launched in 1985.
Frank Colin Skuce
Born 29.10.1927, Alberton
Son of Norman Alexander Frank and Doris Martha Pretoria Skuce of Torrens Road, Cheltenham.
He was educated at Pennington and Thebarton Technical Schools.
Frank served his apprenticeship as a Blacksmith with the Islington Railway Workshops before going to sea as an ordinary seaman in the merchant marine in 1948. He subsequently spent 44 years at sea and in that period he sailed in ships of six nationalities and gained a foreign-going Master Mariner’s Certificate at Plymouth in 1959. He retired as Master of the MV Island Seaway in 1992.
He came to the PARC in 1946, still rows regularly and competes in Old Boys and Veterans events. His most notable successes were
Champion Maiden Eight 1951
Champion Junior Eight 1952
Champion Senior Eight 1952
No doubt, had he not been absent so long at sea he would have maintained a more frequent association with the Club.
The boat – Frank Skuce was a Racing Eight acquired from Prince Alfred College and was built by Sargent & Burton of Sydney. It was launched at Port Adelaide in 1986 and was christened by Mrs Meg Skuce. Its first crew was KL Coldwell, RK Coldwell, D Swan, R Simpson, CT Williams, JF Ward, R Page and FC Skuce.
Kerry Ann Sawford
Born 19.1.1974, Glenelg
Daughter of Malcolm Lewis and Nora Sawford of Wills Street, Largs Bay.
She was educated at North Haven and Taperoo High Schools. Kerry was continuing with study at the TAFE College, Croydon and had completed two years of a course in Accountancy.
Kerry began rowing at Port Adelaide in 1988 as a sculler and later rowed in four oared crews. She achieved many successes in a short time in the sport. In the 1988/89 season she was awarded the trophy for the Most Outstanding Rower.
Her most notable successes were
SA Championships Schoolgirl Fours Under 16 1990
SA Championships Schoolgirl First Fours 1990
SA Championships Female Fours First Grade 1990
SA Championships Female Four Second Grade 1990
SA Championships Female Four Third Grade 1990
Australian Championships Schoolgirl Fours (Tas) 1990
Victorian Championships SAIS Four 1991
Kerry is remembered as a very dedicated competitor, who trained assiduously in an unassuming manner and always was willing to help and encourage junior rowers.
Her untimely demise in June 1992 ended a promising career and the sudden loss was a tremendous shock for her parents and friends. Her contribution to the PARC is commemorated by the Kerry Sawford Memorial Shield and the naming of a racing craft after her.
He boat – Kerry Sawford was a Racing Scull and was launched on Opening Day 1994 and was christened jointly by Nora and Malcolm Sawford.
Norman Maurice Collins
Born 30.8.1920, Greytown, SA
Son of Ernest Henry and Jesse Collins of 20 Rosetta Street, Rosewater
He was educated at the Port Adelaide School and Adelaide School of Mines.
On leaving school Norm obtained employment with the firm, Alfred Martin & Sons, Plumbers and Pipe Fitters, Adelaide, as an apprentice plumber and completed a five year training period. During his time with the firm from 1935 to 1960, Norm recalls working on many of the large city buildings, also the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Woodville, and the MV Morialta in the early post war years. In 1960 he joined the Engineering and Water Supply Department and was engaged on outside inspection work in the Port Adelaide district until he retired in 1980.
Norm became interested in owing after meeting some PARC members at a Henley on Torrens regatta. He subsequently joined the club and also rowed with Mercantile for some of the wartime years. Post war he rowed with PARC from 1946 to 1952.
He held the following offices
Secretary 1949, 1952
Vice Patron 1988 to 1993
Manager King’s Cup crew (Ballarat) 1956
The boat – Norm Collins was a Racing Quad Scull (with or without cox) built by Jeff Sykes of Geelong for the Melbourne University BC. It was christened on the 22nd June 1996 by Mrs Mary Collins and was launched by a crew of women rowers on the 30th June 1996.
Allan Anzac Heffernan
Born 25.4.1940, Alberton
Son of David and Doris Heffernan of 7 Murray Street, Rosewater
He was educated at Port Adelaide Primary and Le Fevre Technical Schools.
Allan’s first employment was with Davies Coop, Spinners, at Kilkenny, but for the last twenty years he has been engaged with earth moving firm of Bardavcol.
He became interested in rowing activities at PARC when he was attending Le Fevre Technical School at the time when school mates were rowing competitively in PARC crews. He did not participate in a lot of racing, but holds fond memories of his involvement in the Keystone Eight, a group of oarsmen who financed their own boat and appeared on occasions, with some flair. He has always been a willing helper in assisting novice rowers.
Allan has been a very good worker for the Club. He held the following offices
Secretary 1995 & 1996
He also devoted a lot of effort to organising special catering in attempts to stimulate the social side of club activities.
The boat – Allan Heffernan was a Racing Four built by P Booth of Adelaide and was launched on Opening Day 1997.
Who represented South Australia in Interstate, Intercolonial or International Events
Son of Alan and Betty Terrell of Gedville Road, Taperoo
He was educated at Taperoo and Le Fevre High Schools.
Brenton completed trade certificate qualifications and was employed as a Pattern Maker at General Motors Holden’s from 1978 – 1983 and after 1983 he was engaged by the Electricity Trust of SA for several years. Following his entry into the SA Sports Institute in 1986 he became a rowing coach and is currently employed full time in that vocation.
He began rowing with PARC in 1976 and his first major success in crew rowing was the SA Maiden Eight championship in 1980. Brenton then decided to concentrate on sculling and his progress from 1981 onward was remarkable. In December 1981 he won a handicap sculls event, on the 17th January 1982 the Champion Junior Sculls, on the 31st January 1982 the Senior Sculls and the 7th February 1982 the Champion Senior Sculls. Subsequently he represented Australia on the following occasions
World Rowing Championships, Belgium, single scull 1985
Commonwealth Games Scotland, double sculls, Silver Medal 1986
International Regatta, Holland, quad sculls 1988
International Regatta, Switzerland, quad sculls 1988
Olympic Games, Korea, quad sculls 1988
Royal Henley Regatta, England, quad sculls, won Queens Mary’s Cup 1988
Also in 1988 he won the President’s Cup for single sculls at the King’s Cup regatta.
Brenton held the following offices
Captain 1979, 1980, 1988, 1989
Coach 1990 to 1992
1887 R Cruickshank, Turnbull, Smith – Intercolonial Eights, Port Adelaide
1888 WR Wooldridge – Intercolonial Intervarsity Eights, Melbourne
1889 R Cruikshank, WR Wooldridge – Intercolonial Intervarsity Eights, Port Adelaide
1891 WR Wooldridge – Intercolonial Intervarsity Eights, Sydney
1899 JL Irvine, W Plaisted, K McKenzie, WA Abernethy, JH Walker, WB Walker, CT Lawton, JH Clouston, J Sweeney – Intercolonial Eights, Melbourne
1902 JH Walker, CT Lawton, JH Clouston, J Sweeney – Interstate Eights, Port Adelaide
1909 TH Petersen, FR Petersen, WG Wigg, JE Osborne, WS Webb – Interstate Eights, Brisbane
1910 WG Wigg, FR Petersen, Oswald, JE Osborne, WS Webb – Interstate Eights
1926 A Walker – King’s Cup, Brisbane
1928 FA Davey, CG White, KS White, TJ Jelly, L White, A Hallett, LW Goerecke, WR Salkeld, CF Turner, A Cormack (E), AA Connolly (Coach), J Kitson (Mgr), W Smith (Trainer) – King’s Cup, Sydney
1929 FA Davey, A Hallett, CG White, TJ Jelly, A Plaisted, L White, LW Goerecke, WR Salkeld, CF Turner, WA Salkeld (Coach), W Smith (Trainer), KS White (Injured) – King’s Cup, Perth
1935 A Plaisted – King’s Cup, Sydney
1937 EF Yates, AH Dowsett (Trainer) – King’s Cup, Murray Bridge
1939 MV Coveney, PB Langdon (Manager), AH Dowsett (Trainer) – King’s Cup, Brisbane
1946 MV Coveney – King’s Cup, Sydney
1948 KL Coldwell – King’s Cup, Hobart
1949 KL Coldwell – King’s Cup, Murray Bridge
1950 KL Coldwell, RK Coldwell, A Smithson – King’s Cup, Melbourne
1951 KL Coldwell, A Smithson, K Simmons, AC Davis – Kings Cup, Brisbane
1952 KL Coldwell, E Tucker, Ron Simpson, KH Simmons, GD Coldwell, RS Webb (E), AC Davis (Cox), RA Francis (Coach) – King’s Cup, Sydney
1953 GD Coldwell, Ron Simpson, J Hill, R Lepley, W Mayfield, AC Davis (Cox), RA Francis (Coach), AR Johnson (Mgr) – King’s Cup, Perth
1954 AC Davis (Cox) – King’s Cup, Hobart
1955 GD Coldwell, RJ Lepley, Ron Simpson (E) – King’s Cup, Port Adelaide
1956 Reg Simpson, NM Collins (Mgr) – King’s Cup, Ballarat
1957 Ron Simpson, J Conley, H Vonthethoff – King’s Cup, Brisbane
1958 B Juers, B Walsh – King’s Cup, Sydney
1960 A Doyle, D Cathcart, A Coldwell, W Field, R Turley, A Frame (E) – Penrith Cup, Launceston
1961 D Sweetman – King’s Cup, Port Adelaide
1965 R Leach (Coach) – King’s Cup, Perth
1969 WW Stone (Manager) – King’s Cup, Bundaberg
1970 C Smith, Lightweight Four, Winner Penrith Cup, Ballarat
1971 GD Coldwell (Coach) – King’s Cup, Perth
1972 GD Coldwell (Coach) – King’s Cup, Hobart
1973 GD Coldwell (Coach) – King’s Cup, Murray Bridge
1974 GD Coldwell (Joint Coach) – King’s Cup, Ballarat
1980 DC Webb, SA Youth Eight, Ballarat
1981 DC Webb, SA Youth Eight, Brisbane
1982 G Thredgold (Cox) – Winner King’s Cup, Penrith
G Thredgold (Cox) – World Championships, Senior A Coxed Fours, Lucerne, Switzerland
1983 G Thredgold (Cox) – Winner King’s Cup, Perth
G Thredgold (Cox) – World Championships, Senior A Coxed Eight, Duisberg, Germany
1984 G Thredgold (Cox) – King’s Cup, Lake Barrington, Tasmania
G Thredgold (Cox) – Bronze Medal, Olympic Games, Los Angeles, Australian Eight
1985 G Thredgold (Cox) – King’s Cup, Ballarat
DC Webb, J Nicholson – King’s Cup, Ballarat
B Terrell, World Rowing Championships, Hazelwinkle, Belgium, single scull
1986 J Nicholson, G Thredgold (Cox) – King’s Cup, West Lakes
B Terrell, Silver Medal, Commonwealth Games, Edinburgh, Scotland, double sculls
1988 B Terrell, International Regatta, Amsterdam, Holland, quad scull
B Terrell, International Regatta, Lucerne, Switzerland, quad scull
B Terrell, Olympic Games, Seoul, Korea, quad scull
B Terrell, Royal Henley Regatta, London, England, quad scull
B Terrell, President’s Cup & King’s Cup Regatta winner, single scull
1899 J Irvine (B), D Brock (2), K McKenzie (3), W Abernethy (4), JW Walker (5), W Walker (6), CT Lawson (7), JH Clouston (S), K Allan (Cox)
1900 JL Irvine (B), W Plaisted (2), K McKenzie (3), JH Walker (4), J McKenzie (5), WB Walker (6), CT Lawton (7), JH Clouston (S), W Sweeney (Cox)
1901 J Irvine (B), GT Wooldridge (2), JL Playfair (3), JH Walker (4), J McKenzie (5), W Abernethy (6), WB Walker (7), JH Clouston (S), W Sweeney (Cox)
1904 L Playfair (B), S McArthur (2), W Almond (3), V Bishop (4), JH Walker (5), A Connolly (6), CT Lawton (7), JH Clouston (S), W Sweeney (Cox)
1907 FR Petersen (B), CW Oswald (2), TH Petersen (3), GA Lawton (4), WG Wigg (5), WR Brown (6), JE Osborne (7), CT Lawton (S), CG Heritage (Cox)
1908 FR Petersen (B), JA Begg (2), TH Petersen (3), GA Lawton (4), WG Wigg (5), AA Connolly (6), JE Osborne (7), CT Lawton (S), WS Webb (Cox)
1909 FR Petersen (B), CW Oswald (2), TH Petersen (3), GA Lawton (4), WG Wigg (5), AA Connolly (6), JE Osborne (7), CT Lawton (S), WS Webb (Cox)
1911 JA Begg (B), S Gillespie (2), N McLeod (3), CW Oswald (4), TH Petersen (5), FA Easton (6), JE Osborne (7), WG Wigg (S), WS Webb (Cox)
1928 FA Davey (B), A Cormack (2), KS White (3), TJ Jelly (4), R White (5), A Hallett (6), LW Goerecke (7), WR Salkeld (S), CF Turner (Cox), WA Salkeld (Coach) in “LO Betts”
1929 FA Davey (B), CG White (2), A Hallett (3), TJ Jelly (4), KS White (5), L White (6), LW Goerecke (7), WR Salkeld (S), CF Turner (Cox), WA Salkeld (Coach) in “LO Betts”
1952 FC Skuce (B), RS Webb (2), Ron Simpson (3), W Mayfield (4), J Hill (5), KL Coldwell (6), E Tucker (7), GD Coldwell (S), AC Davis (Cox) in “JH Clouston”
1953 E Tucker (B), RK Coldwell (2), Ron Simpson (3), W Mayfield (4), J Hill (5), KL Coldwell (6), RJ Lepley (7), GD Coldwell (S), AC Davis (Cox) in “JH Clouston”
1954 R Hodgeman (B), F Cockburn (2), R Webb (3), Reg Simpson (4), Ron Simpson (5), KL Coldwell (6), A Smithson (7), KL Coldwell (S), AC Davis (Cox) in “JH Clouston”
1957 A Coldwell (B), J Conley (2), Ron Simpson (3), H Vonthethoff (4), K Simmons (5), Reg Simpson (6), B Juers (7), B Walsh (S), G Brock (Cox)
1984 D Trinne (B), G Main (2), R Hughes (3), S Webb (4), G Melbourne (5), M Nielsen (6), D Webb (7), J Nicholson (S), G Thredgold (Cox)
1879 J Smith (B), C Hayes (2), T Carter (3), J Playfair (S), F Wald (Cox)
1880 D Sykes (B), E Lamb (2), G Playfair (3), J Playfair (S), F Smith (Cox)
1881 W Manson (B), T Matson (2), J Miller (3), W Fletcher (S), J Coleman (Cox)
1882 W Manson (B), T Matson (2), J Miller (3), W Fletcher (S), J Coleman (Cox)
1883 W Manson (B), J Smith (2), J Miller (3), T Matson (S), J Coleman (Cox)
1884 T Philcox (B), T Turnbull (2), R Walsh (3), R Cruickshank (S), A Fraser (Cox)
1885 R Walsh (B), T Turnbull (2), F Smith (3), R Cruickshank (S), A Fraser (Cox)
1886 R Walsh (B), T Turnbull (2), F Smith (3), R Cruickshank (S), J Knapp (Cox)
1889 F Smith (B), JH Clouston (2), C Clouston (3), R Cruickshank (S), W Philcox (Cox)
1891 W Wooldridge (B), A Lewis (2), R Cruickshank (3), JH Clouston (S), J Philcox (Cox)
1892 TW Plaisted (B), A Lewis (2), W Wooldridge (3), JH Clouston (S), C Sweeney (Cox)
1894 AB Cornell (B), A Lewis (2), W Wooldridge (3), JH Clouston (S), J Lewis (Cox)
1900 JL Irvine (B), WB Walker (2), CT Lawton (3), JH Clouston (S), W Sweeney (Cox)
1901 JL Irvine (B), W Abernethy (2), WB Walker (3), JH Clouston (S), A Lawton (Cox)
1906 F Petersen (B), GA Lawton (2), W Wigg (3), JE Osborne (S), CG Heritage (Cox)
1907 F Petersen (B), GA Lawton (2), W Wigg (3), CT Lawton (S), CG Heritage (Cox)
1909 TH Petersen (B), GA Lawton (2), WG Wigg (3), CT Lawton (S), WS Webb (Cox)
1928 A Cormack (B), L Goerecke (2), K White (3), WR Salkeld (S), B Baker (Cox) in “Chas T Lawton”
1950 AJ Smithson (B), AB Wellman (2), CT Williams (3), KL Coldwell (S), AC Davis (Cox) in AUBC boat
1953 Ron Simpson (B), Reg Simpson (2), W Mayfield (3), GD Coldwell (S), AC Davis (Cox)
1984 G Melbourne (B), M Nielsen (2), J Nicholson (3), D Webb (S)
1984 D Webb & J Nicholson
1878 T Matson
1881 A Monte
1882 T Matson
1883 A Monte
1889 A Monte
1891 JH Clouston
1892 JH Clouston
1893 R Morrow
1894 JH Clouston
1895 JH Clouston
1896 JH Clouston
1899 JH Clouston
1932 K White
1909 R Tobin (B), S Gillespie (2), A Slade (3), L Dalziel (4), T Needles (5), J Reid (6), W Nankervis (7), N McLeod (S), L Bastian (Cox)
1952 E Tucker (B), JF Ward (2), FC Skuce (3), F Cockburn (4), K Simmons (5), Ron Simpson (6), DP Wade (7), GD Coldwell (S), G Brock (Cox)
1957 AJ Frame (B), D Coldwell (2), A Coldwell (3), H Vonthethoff (4), M Campbell (5), B Pearce (6), B Juers (7), B Walsh (S), AC Davis (Cox)
1959 I McFarlane (B), D Cathcart (2), A Doyle (3), N Wilson (4), R Sims (5), D Sweetman (6), R Cameron (7), W Field (S), AC Davis (Cox) in “JH Clouston”
1982 D Trinne (B), M Smart (2), R Hughes (3), G Jones (4), G Dorey (5), S Webb (6), D Webb (7), J Nicholson (S), R Stone (Cox)
1984 D Trinne (B), G Main (2), S Webb (3), G Hardeman (4), R Hughes (5), D Butler (6), D Webb (7), J Nicholson (S), M Sykes (Cox)
1952 RJ Lepley (B), W Mayfield (2), Ron Simpson (3), GD Coldwell (S), AC Davis (Cox)
1957 A Coldwell (B), H Vonthethoff, (2), B Juers (3), B Walsh (S), AC Davis (Cox)
1983 J Nicholson (B) & DC Webb (S)
1940 HC Phillips (B), DW Martin (2), J Lock (3), RA Walker (4), RL Hardy (5), RA Bruton (6), MV Coveney (7), EF Yates (S), AC Davis (Cox), RA Francis (Coach) in “WH Wallace”
1950 R Page (B), DR Nenke (2), FC Skuce (3), G Westmoreland (4), Ron Simpson (5), JF Ward (6), K Simmons (7), GD Coldwell (S), G Brock (Cox), RA Francis (Coach) in “WH Wallace”
1951 KS Smyth (B), AR Childs (2), JW Herriman (3), Reg Simpson (4), BM Stacey (5), D Jones (6), RJ Lepley (7), JR Simmons (S), G Brock (Cox)
1959 I McFarlane (B), D Cathcart (2), R Hinter (3), N Wilson (4), R Sims (5), D Sweetman (6), R Cameron (7), W Field (S), G Brock (Cox) in “JH Clouston”
1980 G Dorey (B), B Magnussen (2), G Hallam (3), DC Webb (4), B Terrell (5), SA Webb (6), A Coldwell (7), A Ward (S), G Main (Cox)
1982 G Hardeman (B), D Trinne (2), K Jones (3), M Smart (4), DC Webb (5), B Hughes (6), J Nicholson (7), G Jones (S), R Stone (Cox)
1960 A Doyle (B), D Cathcart (2), A Coldwell (3), W Field (S), R Turley (Cox) at Murray Bridge
Life Membership is granted by many organisations to people who have rendered exceptional service in devoting time and special effort toward the objectives of the establishment.
The following members were elected Life Members of the Port Adelaide Rowing Club in recognition of the outstanding service they gave.
1906 JH Clouston
1926 CT Lawton
1930 WR Salkeld
1932 HB Everett
1933 AJ Hartley
1940 WS Murch
1948 RA Francis
1952 JE Osborne
1956 VC Cawte
1957 AJ Parham
1966 RK Coldwell
1969 Ron Simpson
1970 KL Coldwell
1973 JF Ward
1977 RS Webb
1984 CT Williams
1986 RJ Lepley
1989 DW Bland
1993 R Page
1996 GA Brock
1997 RM Campbell
Known to have held the office:
1882 ET Smith
1883 ET Smith
1885 ET Smith
1886 S Malin
1889 J Cleave
1892 Capt. Osborne
1899 CR Morris
1906 CR Morris
1910 CR Morris
1923 LO Betts
1924 LO Betts
1925 LO Betts
1926 LO Betts
1927 LO Betts
1928 LO Betts
1929 LO Betts
1930 LO Betts
1932 CE Rawlings
1934 HW Bray
1935 HW Bray
1936 HW Bray
1937 R Wright
1938 R Wright
1939 R Wright
1940 AR Good
1946 G McKay
1947 G McKay
1948 G McKay
1949 H Moore
1950 H Moore
1951 H Moore
1952 H Moore
1953 VC Cawte
1954 VC Cawte
1955 VC Cawte
1959 PW Whicker
1960 PW Whicker
1961 PW Whicker
1962 PW Whicker
1963 PW Whicker
1964 KB Forwood
1965 KB Forwood
1966 KB Forwood
1967 KB Forwood
1968 JE Osborne
1969 HCR Marten
1970 HCR Marten
1971 HCR Marten
1972 HCR Marten
1973 HCR Marten
1975 HCR Marten
1976 HCR Marten
1977 HCR Marten
1978 HCR Marten
1979 HCR Marten
1980 HCR Marten
1981 HCR Marten
1982 HCR Marten
1983 HCR Marten
1984 HCR Marten
1985 HCR Marten
1986 HCR Marten
1987 N Peterson
1988 N Peterson
1989 N Peterson
1990 N Peterson
1991 N Peterson
1992 N Peterson
1993 N Peterson
1994 NM Collins
1930 CE Rawlings
1932 WH Wallace
1933 WH Wallace
1934 WH Wallace
1935 WH Wallace
1936 WH Wallace
1937 WH Wallace
1938 WH Wallace
1939 WH Wallace
1940 WH Wallace
1946 JH Clouston
1947 JH Clouston
1949 VC Cawte
1950 VC Cawte
1951 VC Cawte
1952 VC Cawte
1953 JE Osborne
1954 JE Osborne
1955 JE Osborne
1956 JE Osborne
1957 JE Osborne
1958 JE Osborne
1959 JE Osborne
1960 JE Osborne
1961 JE Osborne
1962 JE Osborne
1963 JE Osborne
1964 JE Osborne
1965 JE Osborne
1966 JE Osborne
1967 JE Osborne
1968 A Monte
1969 A Monte
1970 A Monte
1971 WS Murch
1972 WS Murch
1973 WS Murch
1975 WS Murch
1976 WW Stone
1977 JW Olsen
1978 NM Collins
1979 NM Collins
1980 N Peterson
1981 N Peterson
1982 N Peterson
1983 N Peterson
1984 N Peterson
1985 N Peterson
1986 HCR Marten
1987 HCR Marten
1988 NM Collins
1989 NM Collins
1990 NM Collins
1991 NM Collins
1992 NM Collins
1993 NM Collins
Known to have held the office:
1879 WH Hunder
1882 WH Bundey
1883 WH Bundey
1885 S Malin
1886 E Formby
1889 R Kestel
1890 R Cruickshank
1891 R Cruickshank
1892 R Cruickshank
1893 R Cruickshank
1894 R Cruickshank
1899 G Rev Can Samwell
1906 EW Morris
1909 EW Morris
1910 EW Morris
1914 EW Morris
1923 H Coulls
1924 JH Clouston
1925 JH Clouston
1926 JH Clouston
1928 JH Clouston
1930 JH Clouston
1931 JH Clouston
1932 JH Clouston
1933 JH Clouston
1934 JH Clouston
1935 JH Clouston
1936 JH Clouston
1937 JH Clouston
1938 JH Clouston
1939 JH Clouston
1946 WR Lock
1947 WR Lock
1948 WR Lock
1949 WR Lock
1950 WR Lock
1951 WR Lock
1952 WR Lock
1953 AJ Parham
1954 AJ Parham
1955 AJ Parham
1956 AJ Parham
1957 AJ Parham
1958 AJ Parham
1959 VC Cawte
1960 VC Cawte
1961 VC Cawte
1962 RA Walker
1963 RA Walker
1964 RA Walker
1965 RA Walker
1966 WW Stone
1967 WW Stone
1968 WW Stone
1969 WW Stone
1970 KL Coldwell
1971 KL Coldwell
1972 WW Stone
1973 WW Stone
1974 WW Stone
1975 CT Williams
1976 CT Williams
1977 CT Williams
1978 JF Ward
1979 JF Ward
1980 JF Ward
1981 D Nicholson
1982 DR Swan
1983 DR Swan
1984 DR Swan
1985 Ron Simpson
1986 Ron Simpson
1987 Ron Simpson
1988 RJ Lepley
1989 A Doyle
1990 B Terrell
1991 RK Coldwell
1992 RK Coldwell
1993 RK Coldwell
1994 RK Coldwell
1995 RK Coldwell
1996 A Doyle
Members selected for Captaincy are usually oarsmen of considerable experience. Besides sharing in the strategy of club activities they become responsible for punctuality and discipline and need to have the happy knack of keeping members happy. The quiet ones need to be encouraged and the aggressive ones controlled. Past achievements should not over shadow the efforts of present crews. Known past Captains are:
1878 J Playfair
1879 J Playfair
1880 J Playfair
1882 E Lamb
1883 J Playfair
1884 R Cruickshank
1885 R Cruickshank
1886 R Cruickshank
1887 R Cruickshank
1888 R Cruickshank
1889 R Cruickshank
1890 R Cruickshank
1891 B Honey
1892 JH Clouston
1899 JH Clouston
1906 JH Clouston
1910 JH Clouston
1914 N McLoud
1923 CT Lawton
1924 CT Lawton
1925 AJ Hartley
1926 AJ Hartley
1927 AJ Hartley
1928 AJ Hartley
1929 AJ Hartley
1930 LR Goerecke
1931 AJ Hartley
1933 T Jelly
1934 WS Murch
1935 WS Murch
1936 WS Murch
1937 WS Murch
1938 JH Thomas
1939 JH Thomas
1940 WS Murch
1946 RA Francis
1947 RA Walker
1948 RA Walker
1949 WS Murch
1950 KL Coldwell
1951 NW Murch
1952 GD Coldwell
1953 GD Coldwell
1954 GD Coldwell
1955 RK Coldwell
1956 RK Coldwell
1957 RK Coldwell
1958 RK Coldwell
1959 B Juers
1960 B Juers
1961 R Sims
1962 R Sims
1963 R Sims
1964 D Sweetman
1965 G Westmoreland
1966 RK Coldwell
1967 Ron Simpson
1968 Ron Simpson
1969 Ron Simpson
1970 W Field
1971 R Benson
1972 JF Ward
1973 WD Forth
1974 JF Ward
1975 JF Ward
1976 D Coldwell
1977 D Coldwell
1978 M Ward
1979 B Terrell
1980 B Terrell
1981 J Nicholson
1982 D Cushion
1983 G Main
1984 R Hughes
1985 G Thredgold
1986 D Trinne
1987 A Heffernan
1988 B Terrell
1989 B Terrell
1990 P Blesing
1991 RK Coldwell
1992 P Blesing
1993 R Bastian
1994 M Thompson
1995 P Bastian
1996 P Blesing
Known to have held the office were:
1879 EG Blackmore
1880 E Formby
1881 MG Blackmore
1882 E Formby
1883 EJ Lamb
1885 N McEachern
1886 N McEachern
1889 CH Clouston
1891 H Dewar
1892 J Sweeney
1893 J Sweeney
1899 JJ Walsh
1905 JE Osborne
1906 JE Osborne
1910 WG Wigg
1914 AE Stone
1923 E Williamson
1924 HF Boyes
1925 AH Clouston
1926 AH Clouston
1927 AW Quinn
1928 AW Quinn
1929 AW Quinn
1930 H Minchinberg
1931 H Minchinberg
1932 THA Butler
1933 THA Butler
1934 PB Langdon
1935 PB Langdon
1936 THA Butler
1937 PB Langdon
1938 PB Langdon
1939 DP Croston
1946 J Lock
1947 CFW Foster
1948 CFW Foster
1949 NM Collins
1950 H Smith
1951 H Smith
1952 NM Collins
1953 RM Campbell
1954 K Way
1955 GD Coldwell
1956 GD Coldwell
1957 R Leach
1958 GD Coldwell
1959 RM Campbell
1960 RM Campbell
1961 WW Stone
1962 WW Stone
1963 WW Stone
1964 T Miller
1965 J Aubert
1966 Ron Simpson
1967 CT Williams
1968 CT Williams
1969 CT Williams
1970 RM Campbell
1971 JF Ward
1972 DW Bland
1973 DW Bland
1974 DW Bland
1975 DW Bland
1976 RJ Lepley
1977 DW Bland
1978 DW Bland
1979 DW Bland
1980 DW Bland
1981 J Moore
1982 DW Bland
1983 DW Bland
1984 Ron Simpson
1985 RJ Lepley
1986 RJ Lepley
1987 RJ Lepley
1988 A Doyle
1989 A Doyle
1990 K Simpson
1991 RM Campbell
1992 M Herriman
1993 M Ward
1994 J Anderson
1995 A Heffernan
1996 A Heffernan
Known to have held the office were:
1878 R Honey
1879 R Honey
1880 E Formby
1882 E Formby
1883 EJ Lamb
1892 J Lewis
1899 A Eustis
1906 GE Mart
1910 J Reid
1914 R Russell
1923 LR Wiggins
1924 LR Wiggins
1925 LR Wiggins
1926 A Hallett
1927 KA Salkeld
1928 KA Salkeld
1929 KA Salkeld
1930 KA Salkeld
1932 DP Croston
1934 WD Lock
1935 WD Lock
1936 PB Langdon
1937 RI McIlwain
1938 RI McIlwain
1939 ME McKiggan
1946 AR Johnson
1947 AR Johnson
1948 AR Johnson
1949 AR Johnson
1950 WW Stone
1951 AR Johnson
1952 AR Johnson
1953 AR Johnson
1954 AR Johnson
1955 AR Johnson
1956 AR Johnson
1957 B Dupree
1958 B Dupree
1959 B Dupree
1960 B Dupree
1961 B Dupree
1962 RM Campbell
1963 W Thomas
1964 A Frame
1965 A Frame
1966 A Frame
1967 DR Swan
1968 DR Swan
1969 DR Swan
1970 DR Swan
1971 DR Swan
1972 RJ Lepley
1973 RJ Lepley
1974 RJ Lepley
1975 RJ Lepley
1976 RJ Lepley
1977 DW Bland
1978 RJ Lepley
1979 RJ Lepley
1980 D Cathcart
1981 D Cathcart
1982 D Cathcart
1983 D Cathcart
1984 D Cathcart
1985 G Main
1986 Ron Simpson
1987 Ron Simpson
1988 Ron Simpson
1989 Ron Simpson
1990 Ron Simpson
1991 Ron Simpson
1992 Ron Simpson
1993 KL Coldwell
1994 A Doyle
1995 K Leal
1996 K Leal
Families are regarded highly in present day social standards and they have contributed a great deal to the structure of the Port Adelaide Rowing Club. In a number of instances fathers, who rowed, have had the satisfaction of seeing their sons and daughters follow them and succeed in the sport. In other cases, due to the lack of records, we are unable to establish whether some members, of the same name, were related. For example, there were many Walkers and some Whites, who we cannot relate. In seeking to feature the value contributed by family groups, it was decided that, for the purpose of this record, three members would constitute a family.
The Lawton Family
Charles Thomas Lawton (see Boats and Nominees section)
George Alexander Lawton
Son of Charles Edward and Marian Lawton of Selth Street, Albert Park, SA, and brother of Charles Thomas.
He was educated at Port Adelaide.
Alex began rowing with PARC later than Charles. His first attempt at Champion Eights came in 1906 when Adelaide Rowing Club won. He continued to row in fours and eights stroked by Charles and they enjoyed much success together winning titles in eights from 1907 to 1909, and in fours in 1906, 1907 and 1909. His rowing career was then interrupted until 1914 after the brothers took on a framing venture. However, he did row for Port Adelaide in 1912 and again in a test race against Murray Bridge in April 1913 when a crew was mustered to give the country club a trial.
He was employed in the family coach building business in Port Adelaide and continued to support the PARC for a great many years.
He was made a Life Member in 1932.
Alfred Edward Lawton
Son of Charles Edward and Marian Lawton of Selth Street, Albert Park, SA, and brother of Charles Thomas.
He was educated at Alberton School.
Alf was employed in the indenting business with George Wills and Co., Adelaide for thirty years. Lighter in build than his brother he coxed in fours at the Port between 1901 and 1903. He won Champion Fours in 1901 and also raced in 1902 and 1903.
Edward Alfred Lawton
Born 22nd October 1909
Son of Charles Thomas and Florence Frieda Lawton of Magea.
He was educated at Woodville.
Ted trained as an electrical engineer and worked at Unbehaun and Johnson, Adelaide, for many years. Later he was employed by the SA Harbours Board at Glanville.
He began rowing at a very young age in 1923 and competed in fours and eights at a time when the PARC was re-establishing after the Great War.
William Charles Lawton
Born 15th March, 1911 in Adelaide
Son of Charles Thomas and Florence Frieda Lawton of Magea.
He was educated at Woodville and Thebarton Boys’ Technical Schools.
He was employed in the family coach building business at Port Adelaide.
Bill began rowing with the PARC as a coxswain in 1926 as a result of his father’s involvement and rowed in a regatta on the Torrens in that year.
The Murch Family
Winlock Samuel Murch (see Boats and Nominees section)
Born 24th October, 1906 in Port Pirie
Son of John H and Anna B Murch of Wills Street, Largs Bay.
He was educated at Le Fevre Peninsula School.
Reg worked for many years with his brother Lockie operating the family ferry service across the Port River until December 1940. He was a Master Mariner and captained ketches in the gulf trade in later years.
He began rowing as a coxswain, raced in 1922 and later rowed with PARC until 1934/35. Reg was also well known in boxing and wrestling circles in the thirties and frequently contested bouts at the Naval Drill Hall, Birkenhead.
Norman Winlock Murch
Born 16th August, 1928 in Largs Bay
Son of Winlock Samuel and Lillian Jean Murch of 18 Claughton Road, Largs Bay
He was educated at Largs and Woodville High Schools
After leaving school Norm served a five year apprenticeship as a Fitter & Turner with Lelliott Bros., Engineers of Port Adelaide. Later he worked for the Electricity Trust of SA and ICI Company at Osborne. In 1965 he moved to Whyalla where he worked for the BHP Company as a Maintenance Foreman in the steelworks and as Chief Mechanic in the foundries. He moved again in 1973 to Horsham, Victoria, to work as Maintenance Engineer at the Vulcan foundry.
Norm began an early association with the PARC through his father’s interests and began as a coxswain about 1940. He became an oarsman in 1946 rowing in Lightweight Fours then regularly in eight oared events until 1954.
He also served on the committee and was Captain for the 1951 season. He continued his interest in rowing at the Horsham Rowing Club where he served on the committee, as a coach from 1973 to 1980, and as President from 1976 to 1979.
The Salkeld Family
William Alfred Salkeld
Born 19th September, 1863 in Melbourne
He came to Adelaide in 1883 and settled at Birkenhead where he eventually established a butcher’s shop in Rann Street, which was very close to the rowing boatsheds before and after 1924.
He began with the PARC as a Trainer and took over as Coach for the period 1928 and 1929. The unusual aspect about William Snr. Is that he was never an oarsman. During his time the club built up in strength after the Great War to win Champion Eights in 1928 and 1929, as a result of which, Port Adelaide was chosen to represent South Australia in the King’s Cup races in Sydney and Perth. The Champion Fours title was also won in 1928. In addition, a second eight also rowed successfully in other grades as well as lightweight and maiden four crews.
He frequently officiated for the SARA at their regattas on the Torrens and Port Rivers.
He was elected a Life Member in 1932.
Clarence Albany Salkeld
Born in 1900, Albany, WA
First son of William Alfred and Edith Alice Salkeld
He was educated at Le Fevre Peninsula School
Clarrie was a carpenter tradesman and worked at various locations for the Shell Oil Company. He became attached to the club as a trainer and assisted the oarsmen with his attention from 1927 until 1929.
Kingsley Alfred Salkeld
Born 16th January, 1903 at Port Adelaide
Son of William Alfred and Edith Alice Salkeld of Rann Street, Birkenhead
He was educated at Le Fevre Peninsula School
King was employed all his working life by the Adelaide Milling Company at Port Adelaide and rose to the position of Managing Director.
He was recognised as a very good oarsman and he rowed successfully in the club second eight in the 1920’s, often as stroke. Later he took to sculling as a means of keeping fit.
He was Club Treasurer from 1927 to 1929, SARA Assistant Secretary in 1929 and later was elected as a Vice President.
William Rupert Salkeld
Born 18th March 1908, at Port Adelaide
Son of William Alfred and Edith Alice Salkeld of Rann Street, Birkenhead
He was educated at Le Fevre Peninsula and Adelaide Boys’ Technical Schools
Bill was employed in the State Public Service and held eminent positions as Registrar of Births, Marriages and Deaths, and also as Secretary to the SA Police Department.
Bill began rowing in 1925 and enjoyed his first success as Bow in Alf Hallett’s crew when they won the Forrester Fours in November 1925. He later became the senior Stroke in the club, a position he held with distinction for Champion Eights wins in 1928 and 1929 and Champion Fours in 1928. He was not a man of large stature, rowing at 9 stone 6 pounds and newspaper reports of races in the 1920s attributed some of the wins to his skills and judgement as stroke for Port Adelaide.
He had many years of service with the RAN Reserve before World War 2 in which he served for five and a half years, rising to the rank of Lieutenant Commander.
He was elected a Life Member in 1930, Treasurer in 1931 and Captain in 1932.
George Edward Salkeld
Born 5th June, 1910 at Port Adelaide
Son of William Alfred and Edith Alice Salkeld of Rann Street, Birkenhead
He was educated at Le Fevre Peninsula School
A clerical worker he was employed by BALM Paints at Port Adelaide until he enlisted in the Army in 1942. After demobilisation he worked with COR Oil Company and British Petroleum for 25 years.
George began with the PARC in 1922 as a coxswain when he was 12 years of age, and was frequently successful. At that time the boatshed was situated on Cruickshank’s Corner and he recalls launching boats from the muddy bank of the river. Later he became an active oarsman and rowed mostly in the lightweight crews in 1929.
The Salkeld daughters, Dorothy, Irene and Gwen also supported their menfolk by helping with catering at the club on regatta days.
The Wallace Family
William Henry Wallace (see Boats and Nominees)
William Wallace Jnr
Unfortunately it has not been possible to contact any members of the Wallace family to obtain extra personal details.
Bill was probably born at Largs Bay and it is believed he attended Geelong Grammar School where he gained a lot of rowing experience. He rowed with the PARC in the early 1930s and was a member until 1934/35.
Bill joined the RAN soon after the outbreak of hostilities and is known to have been commissioned as Sub Lieutenant early in the war.
Richard Hamilton Wallace
Born 12th January, 1918 at Largs Bay
It is believed that he was educated at St Peters College
Dick rowed for a short time with the PARC in the early 1930s before joining the RAAF as a regular Air Force Officer. He became a fighter pilot and served with No.21 City of Melbourne Squadron and 21/453 Squadron in the Malaya and Singapore campaigns in 1941/42. During a hectic period of air fighting he is remembered for an epic recovery from a mid air collision with a fellow pilot. After “ditching” his plane in the sea, and though injured and bleeding, he swam ashore before struggling for two days through the jungle. He built a raft and floated down a river before he was found by an AIF patrol near Jemaluang. The party took five days to cover two miles with the injured airman before reaching the AIF base. Dick returned to Australia in March 1942. He later served with No. 5 and No. 30 Squadrons and was killed on air operations off Amboina on 29th October 1944. Dick was the pilot of one (A19-216) of two Beaufighters assigned to sweep the north coast of Amboina and attack targets at low level. Whilst strafing a wireless station and direction finding station at Silale, the aircraft came under accurate fire from the ground. A19-216 was seen to make a steep turn from 100 feet near the Bay of Bogoeala and afterwards crash into the sea. A search found no trace of the aircraft or crew.
The Lock Family
William Richard Lock (see Boats and Nominees)
William Donald Lock
Born 13th June, 1913 at Broken Hill
Elder son of William Richard and Jessie Silverton Lock of Broken Hill
He was educated in Sydney and at Thebarton Boys Technical School
Don mostly worked with his father at the Cumberland Hotel at Glanville. He began rowing in 1931 and held the office of Treasurer in 1934 and 1935. He married in 1942 and spent some time in the Army.
After the war Don continued his interest in rowing and was very active in support of the Club as a Vice President for many years.
Born 5th April, 1921 at Rose Bay, NSW
Elder son of William Richard and Jessie Silverton Lock of Rose Bay, NSW
He was educated at Le Fevre Peninsula, Woodville high School and Muirden College, Adelaide
He was employed as a clerk with the BHP Company, Adelaide until he enlisted in the 2/43rd Battalion AIF on 4th January, 1942. He served in the Western Desert campaign at El Alamein. He returned to Australia in 1943 and then served in the New Guinea campaign.
He was demobilised in 1945 and resumed working at the Cumberland Hotel at Glanville. As a young man, Jack was powerfully built for his stature. He had been actively engaged in swimming and in 1934, whilst at Le Fevre Peninsula School, he was a member of the school team which won the JH Clouston Shield for inter-school competition. He also began coxing with the PARC in 1934 before taking up the blade in 1938. In the 1939/40 season he was in the crew that won the first Arnold Cup for Port Adelaide and rowed No.3 oar in the crew which won the Maiden Eight Championship. He won the JE Baker trophy for scoring most Association points.
Jack had trouble with his health after the war years. He resumed rowing for a short time in 1946, but after retiring, he maintained an active interest in the Club and gave generous support as a Vice President for a number of years.
The Coldwell Family
Ronald Kenneth Coldwell (see Boats and Nominees section)
Keith Leonard Coldwell (see Boats and Nominees section)
Graham David Coldwell
Born 3rd March, 1932 at Largs Bay
Son of Kenneth James and Flora Coldwell of 22 Persic Street, Largs Bay
He was educated at Largs Bay, Le Fevre High Schools and Adelaide College
Graham first began work as a shipwright/carpenter with the Adelaide Steamship Company and JP Clausen & Sons in 1952/53 before he proceeded to the Teachers’ College as a Manual Training teacher from 1953 to 1954.
He had begun with the PARC as a coxswain in 1948 but began rowing in which he was soon successful and started a winning run for Port Adelaide crews. During his teaching career he was appointed to positions involving rowing at Renmark 1957-58, Mannum 1958-59, Kings’ College 1959 to 1974 and Prince Alfred College 1974 to 1991.
During his active rowing career which extended until 1960 and during which he raced for Adelaide, University, Renmark, Mannum and Thames (London) he gathered an impressive number of major successes for Port Adelaide such as:
Champion Maiden Eight 1950
Champion Junior Eight 1952
Champion Senior Eight 1952, 1953
Champion Junior Four 1952
Champion Senior Four 1953
Kings’ Cup Selection 1952 (Sydney), 1953 (Perth), 1955 (Port Adelaide)
Within the PARC he held the following offices:
Captain 1952 to 1954
Secretary 1955, 1956, 1958
With the SARA he was an Elected Member and served as:
State Coach 1971 to 1974
Delegate to Australian Rowing Council
National Regatta Official and Examiner
Coach SA Elite Squad 1992
Graham was awarded SARA Life Membership in 1978
With over fifty years association with rowing he has extended his talents not only to coaching, but also to design, examining, chairmanship and as an author on rowing topics.
The Webb Family
Ross Samuel Webb (see Boats and Nominees section)
Stuart Anthony Webb
Born 11th June, 1960 at Henley Beach
Son of Ross and Kaye Webb of 4 Samuel Street, Fulham
He was educated at Fulham and Pulteney Grammar Schools and graduated from the SA Institute of Technology, Adelaide, B. Arts (Accounting)
Stuart was engaged in accountancy and later gained accreditation as a Chartered Accountant and now has a partnership in that field. He served the Club as Auditor from 1989 to 1992.
He began rowing with PARC in 1973 and continued until 1985. He also rowed for Pulteney Grammar School in 1976 and 1977. His most notable successes were:
Champion Maiden Eight 1980
Champion Junior Eight 1982, 1984
Champion Lightweight Eight 1983
Champion Senior Eight 1984
Darren Christopher Webb
Born 10th April, 1962 at Henley Beach
Son of Ross and Kaye Webb of 4 Samuel Street, Fulham
He was educated at Fulham and Pulteney Grammar Schools and graduated from the SA Institute of Technology, Adelaide, B. Arts (Accounting)
Darren was engaged by an accountancy firm and later gained accreditation as a Chartered Accountant and now has a partnership in that field.
He began with PARC as a coxswain from 1972 to 1974. He then started rowing in 1975 and continued until 1985. At certain times between 1976 and 1979 he rowed both with PARC and Pulteney Grammar School on the school’s insistence and crewed in the school’s first eight in 1979. His most notable successes were:
Champion Maiden Eight 1980, 1982
Champion Junior Eight 1982, 1984
Champion Junior Pair 1983
Champion Junior Four 1983 (VRA, Ballarat)
Champion Senior Pair 1984
Champion Senior Four 1984
Champion Senior Eight 1984
Kings’ Cup selection 1985 (Ballarat)
State Youth Eight 1980 (Ballarat), 1981 (Queensland)
The Ward Family
Jack Frederick Ward (see Boats and Nominees section)
Doris Violet Mae Ward (see Boats and Nominees section)
Martin John Ward
Born 20th December 1957 at Port Adelaide
Son of Jack and Doris Ward of 36 Avro Avenue, Hendon
He was educated at Alberton and Woodville High Schools and King’s College, Adelaide.
Martin began rowing at age 12 in 1969 in Under 15 schoolboy events and enjoyed considerable success with a PARC crew. From 1970 to 1970 he contested successfully in other schoolboy events.
He attended King’s College on an athletic scholarship and stroked the college eight in the 1973 Head of the River race. He rowed for PARC in Maiden and Junior Eights, also Maiden, Junior and Senior Fours.
Martin held the offices of Captain in 1978 and Secretary in 1993.
Andrew Ivan Ward
Born 19th February, 1961 at Port Adelaide
Son of Jack and Doris Ward of 36 Avro Avenue, Hendon
He was educated at Alberton and Woodville High Schools and he trained for his profession as a school teacher at the Salisbury Teachers’ College.
Andrew became involved in rowing at PARC in 1969 as a coxswain and began active rowing in Under 14 schoolboy events in 1974. He later progressed to senior rowing and stroked the PARC crew which won the Maiden Eight Championship in 1980.
Coaching a crew seems to appeal to a specific type of person. It does not imply that the coach, themselves, is a very polished performer and conversely, personal skill does not always mean ability to impart it to others. Clearly, it has been a labour of love at club level as we know it, without remuneration and recognition of the public. There are often sharp disagreements between coaches and rowers. The pleasure and satisfaction of seeing the crew row well to win brings the inner reward.
Many believe that Steve Fairbairn had the greatest individual impact on technique in rowing. Orthodoxy was altered decisively.
Coaches (Known to have been elected)
1890 R Cruickshank
1891 R Cruickshank
1892 R Cruickshank
1893 R Cruickshank
1894 R Cruickshank
1896 J Playfair
1898 EA Wooldridge
1899 RR Morrow
1904 H Skeffington
1906 JH Clouston
1907 JH Clouston
1908 JH Clouston
1909 JH Clouston
1911 F Wilkinson
1912 EA Wooldridge
1913 EA Wooldridge
1914 FAC Easton
1926 CT Lawton
1928 WA Salkeld
1929 WA Salkeld
1930 AJ Hartley
1934 TK Qurban
1935 TK Qurban
1937 TK Qurban
1938 WS Murch
1939 RA Francis
1946 WS Murch
1947 MV Coveney
1948 WS Murch
1950 KL Coldwell
1951 KL Coldwell
1952 KL Coldwell
1953 KL Coldwell
1958 B Watson
1960 B Watson
1961 Ron Simpson
1962 B Watson
1964 RK Coldwell
1965 RK Coldwell
1966 A Hoffman
1967 A Hoffman
1968 M Campbell
1969 T Harvey
1970 W Field
1972 KL Coldwell
1975 KL Coldwell
1980 P McCullough
1981 P McCullough
1982 P McCullough
“ The Coxswain is the only person in the boat who can see where the team is headed. They steer the boat and keeps an eye out for any obstacles. They also inform the crew of the progress of the competition then tells them how to win the race. Like a miniature coach, the cox keeps on the rowers’ backs, pushing them to the limits of their endeavour. Yet they must be careful not to push them too far, after all, they are getting a free ride from these hardworking teammates”
Benjamin Ivry “Regatta” 1988
“ It may be frequently observed (says Visor in the Australasian) that clubs have a happy go lucky way of discovering and retaining for their special service some good natured, intelligent little fellow, who, by dint of perseveringly going out with scratch crews, has picked up a smattering knowledge of the use of rudder lines. This boy is immediately pounced upon and asked to steer the regatta crews and placed in the seat of an outrigger four or eight and expected to keep a crew together, make a good course, and handle the rudder lines with lightness and skill, without the slightest assistance or instruction from anyone. It has been urged again and again that this important matter should be better looked to. Coxswains do not receive half the credit, reward, or thanks that they are due when successful, but if they make mistakes, as they frequently do, they receive abuse in abundance. This is very unfair, for these juvenile, and usually dwarfed and frail specimens of humanity are most obliging and self denying, they will dance attendance night after night on a crew, be the weather good or bad, and in the case of a win, oft times due to their cleverness, receive, as their sole reward, a prize on a reduced scale to the rest of their companions in the boat, and in the event of defeat, their services are scarcely acknowledged. Now, the very important work a coxswain does should not be forgotten, and his skill and dexterity should be better rewarded and encouraged than it is. The light and speedy craft now in use require extremely careful handling, and it would be a very good thing were a steering competition introduced at regattas, with good prizes and hearty encouragement for the clever little coxswains. In conclusion, it may be observed that it is a common practice to allow the boys to steer, even in cold, bleak weather, clad in a jersey of the same appearance and texture as the oarsmen. The necessity for this is hard to divine (sic), the weight of a flannel jacket over the boy’s ordinary clothing could make small difference, and would prevent them uselessly endangering their health.” (From SA Register 14th December, 1886)
In 1981 Graham Coldwell compiled and published a booklet, “The Coxswain and Rowing” in honour of the Resting Rowers’ Consortium.
The ritual of the winning team tossing their cox into the water will probably never change. The spectacle satisfies the crew and spectators who resent this powerful person who appears to get a free ride.
The SA Rowing Association minimum weight provisions were seven stone for fours and eight stone for eights. Underweight had to be made up with ballast checked carefully by the weight steward and nobody wanted to carry overweight if it could be avoided. Consequently most coxswains were very young boys who could only carry out their duties until their physical development put them out of a job. Occasionally adult people, of small stature, came along and they were able to serve crews and clubs for longer periods with the added advantage of maturity.
These coxswains with their knowledge of the art of oarsmanship were able to become rowers after their coxing days were over.
R Cruickshank (Bob)
G Salkeld (George)
W Lawton (Bill)
RE Murch (Reg)
CF Turner (Colin)
J Lock (Jack)
CWJ Poynter (Clarrie)
DW Martin (Dave)
P McCarthy (Pat)
NW Murch (Norm)
GA Brock (Gordon)
GD Coldwell (Graham)
A Coldwell (Anthony)
DC Webb (Darren)
A Ward (Andrew)
Coxswains who steered champion crews (first occasion)
1879 F Wald
1880 F Smith
1881 J Coleman
1884 A Fraser
1886 J Knapp
1892 C Sweeney
1899 K Allan
1900 W Sweeney
1901 J Philcox
1904 W Smith
1906 CG Heritage
1908 WS Webb
1909 L Bastian
1928 CF Turner
1940 AC Davis
1952 GA Brock
1980 G Main
1982 R Stone
The only PARC coxswain to be selected at international level was Gavin Thredgold, who came to Port Adelaide after experience in rowing at Pulteney Grammar School, Adelaide, when some rowers from that school joined their crewmates, the Webb brothers, when they decided to continue senior rowing at the Port.
His international achievements were:
World Championships, Lucerne, Switzerland 1982 Senior A Four
World Championships, Duisberg, Germany 1983 Senior A Eight
Olympic Games, Los Angeles, USA 1984 Eights Bronze Medal
Other known successes were:
King’s Cup, Penrith 1982 Winner
King’s Cup, Perth 1983 Winner
Clearly, the most successful coxswain in the history of the PARC was Charlie Davis, who was persuaded to come to the Club by Roy Walker for Opening Day 1938 at the age of fifteen years. He was very short, lightly built and well under seven stone. His first notable success was winning the Arnold Cup for Maiden Fours at Mannum in January 1940, the first occasion on which that trophy was won by a Port Adelaide crew. His first championship came soon after in Maiden Eights in 1940. He resumed in 1946 after war service and between 1950 and 1959 he steered twelve crews to championships. Charlie possessed a bright, chirpy nature and he was well known, not only in his own club but also others, far and wide in rowing circles.
Colours, Courses and Clubhouses
The now traditional black and white colours of Port Adelaide were not worn by either the football or rowing clubs when they formed. In fact the latter had three outfits before becoming “magpies”.
At the Port Regatta of 1885 the PARC wore magenta, royal blue and white. Later the singlets were changed to all blue, whilst in the 1924-132 period crews are shown wearing royal blue with a white V.
On Opening Day, 23rd October 1933, the colours were changed to black and white with hoop designed jumpers and a black and white striped blazer was also adopted. The rowing singlet has not varied very much since then, but in the years after World War 2, when the blazer cloth could not be obtained, a plain black cloth was used for jackets. One of the original 1933 blazers, passed on by Reg Francis, is still being worn today.
Rowing courses have always varied in length according to the class of crews and boats. Before the development of the port, races were staged in the vicinity of the North Arm, but within a few decades, when vast crowds of up to 25,000 people congregated on the wharves at the New Years Day regattas, some races were contested near McLaren Wharf. For example, from Queen’s Wharf to buoys moored off Red Buoy Spit or the Coal Shed and return. In 1878 champion fours and sculls raced over three and a quarter miles from below the North Arm to Queen’s Wharf. Some of the landmarks such as Luff Point and Cruickshank’s Corner have disappeared in modern times as a result of dredging by the port authority. In fact, on Cruickshank’s Corner, Birkenhead, not only the river bank disappeared but also a row of houses on the eastern side of Elder Road adjacent to the Birkenhead Hotel. Nowadays, that part of the river bank might well be named Cruickshank’s Cove.
The establishment of the SA Rowing Association resulted in mile posts being erected on the eastern side of the river at the three, two, one and a half and one mile points from the Port end of Commercial and Birkenhead Wharves that is, racing from north to south. Most championships have been staged at Port Adelaide which gave considerable advantages to the local and metropolitan crews. Country clubs were long confronted with the added burden of transporting their boats to the city if they wanted to contest the championships. In the days before trailers, boats were often transported by train and carried by their crews from Glanville railway station to the SA Rowing Association boatshed in Jenkins Street on the day of the race. Then, of course, the same load had to be faced on the homeward journey – win or lose. The “tide” turned, of course, when regattas began to occur at upper and lower River Murray clubs. To get their boats to Mannum, city clubs had to rail them from Adelaide to Murray Bridge then arrange to have them towed upstream to Mannum, and vice versa. A visit to the Christmas regattas at Renmark and Berri also entailed railing boats on 28th December to Murray Bridge where they were transhipped by Murray Bridge oarsmen to a barge towed by Captain Arnold’s “Avoca”. Crews travelled from Adelaide to Mannum and joined the “Avoca” there for the voyage to reach Renmark on 30th December. After the regattas, Mannum was not reached until 3rd January. The travelling conditions can be imagined. They were hardy and enthusiastic competitors in those days of steam trains and steam boats. Country clubs, Mannum and Murray Bridge were allocated championship races at times, perhaps more frequently after World War 2.
Finally the introduction of 2000 metre etc. courses and the establishment of the PARC boathouse at Snowden’s Beach changed the planning of rowing courses and the direction of racing more from south toward north.
Cruickshank’s Corner – The first boatshed of the PARC was sited on Cruickshank’s Corner near McFarlane Slip. The first structure had to be altered in 1880 to provide extra length for the first eight oared boat. Adelaide Rowing Club also had their own boatshed in that area in the 1890s taking over the Birkenhead Rowing Club shed in partnership with the Adelaide University Boat Club because it was impracticable to transport boats frequently and they preferred to keep their racing eight at Port Adelaide. Those facilities could only be described as “spartan” or primitive by present day standards. The river bank was muddy, there was no water connected and the only lighting was by lantern.
Jenkins Street – At the end of November 1924 better premises for the SA Rowing Association were almost completed in Jenkins Street, Birkenhead to the delight of oarsmen of that time. The building provided a dressing room, 100 small lockers and 14 large club lockers, accommodation for 30 boats and oar racks, electric light and water connected with two bathrooms and showers. The PARC then became a sub tenant and the floating landing came later.
Snowden’s Beach – By 1957 the need for better boathouse facilities prompted the PARC management committee to seek new premises in the northern section of the Port River on the Birkenhead/Largs bank. The Jenkins Street premises, leased by the SA Rowing Association from the SA Harbours Board and sub let to the PARC had become very dilapidated, were affected by peak tides, and exposed to severe buffeting in stormy weather. Maintenance of the ramp and pontoon launching platform was difficult and expensive. Capacity to launch and recover boats was mostly limited to one at a time. This was inadequate for training when city clubs detached to prepare for championships at Port Adelaide, and particularly on regatta days when time tables were involved. The capacity of the building and surrounds had become inadequate for growing fleets, parking space for competitors’ motor vehicles and accommodation for oarsmen. Above all, was the desire to be independent, “To have a home of our own”.
On 21st June, 1957 a sub-committee, comprising AJ Parham, AR Johnson, KB Forwood, R Leach, CS Coogan and a Mr Wiles, was elected to begin negotiations to obtain a site for a new clubhouse to provide more comfortable, more convenient and more efficient facilities. The aim was to have the clubhouse overlooking the rowing courses and positioned right on the finishing point.
Negotiations with the SA Harbours Board to lease the required land were successful when approval was given on 22nd November, 1957. Liaison with the Adelaide Speedboat Club was also necessary with regard to the actual site for the rowing boathouse. Officials from that club suggested the rowing building be situated further south than that envisaged at the time and this eventually proved to be more satisfactory.
On 10th January, 1958 the new building committee was re-constituted and GD Coldwell, Captain, R Leach, Secretary, and B Dupree were elected to take over the responsibility. On 27th July, 1958 the general committee approved the new building plans and asked the sub-committee to raise finance (Two thousand pounds).
In the formative stages invaluable assistance was given by two staunch supporters of rowing, Keith Forwood and Vin Cawte. Keith, who was Managing Director of Forwood Johns Waygood P/L, President of Adelaide Rowing Club, Patron of PARC 1964-67 and a supporter of rowing in general, designed the building drawings, provided steel for the fabrication of the frame work at cost price, and gave helpful consultation during progress of the work. Vin Cawte, PARC Vice Patron from 1953-55 and Patron in 1954-55, made his workshop and equipment at Hilton available for the manufacturing of the steel frames. He also provided one of his trucks – available at any time required – for a period of twelve months.
On 20th September, 1958 Ross Webb and Graham Coldwell were asked to organise the construction work. From that time Ross Webb, Ron Simpson and Keith Coldwell contributed the leading efforts in the preparation of the building. For a start, Ross and Ron took a week off from their employment to undertake the work of cutting the steel and welding up all the framework.
The site at that stage was very isolated and there were no existing water and power services. A water pipe line had to be laid over a distance of approximately a quarter of a mile by club members. The absence of electric power meant that on site welding had to be done by using a petrol driven generator for the welder. On site work was done mainly on Sundays over a period of twelve to eighteen months with good general support coming from the members. Mr K Way provided a mobile crane to hoist the heavy steel work into position during the erection stage.
The new building was officially opened on the 17th December, 1960 by Mr PW Whicker, Mayor of Port Adelaide.
“Why should a sensible young man voluntarily subject himself to the severest moral and physical ordeal known in the entire field of competitive sport?”
NMW Harris “Sampan Pidgin”
Rowers prepare and race their Club, State or Country. Their first aim is to gain selection at the base. Attaining the second or third level brings credit to the club they represent. They are amateurs so they pay for the privilege of competing for the honour of winning for their club.
In 1938, Dave Croston displayed a notice in the committee room at Jenkins Street which read, “PARC first, second, third and it there is any left, PARC again” or in other words, “Give everything you have.” The Coach might well say, “Give your all in the first quarter mile.”
In rowing it has long been the practice to acknowledge the winners by presenting something to the individual crew members, be it a certificate or a trophy. As in other sports handsome perpetual trophies have been given by generous supporters of rowing as an incentive and as a means of recording for posterity the history of the annual events. Whenever the trophies are examined someone will look back on the details of past contests.
Details of perpetual trophies given for rowing races mainly contested at Port Adelaide are:
SA Rowing Association
Sir Edwin T Smith Shield for Champion Eights was presented in 1891 by Mr ET Smith, Mayor of Adelaide and Patron of PARC from 1882 to 1885. The first race was won by University, with PARC runners up in 1891, 1892, 1894 and 1895 (no race 1893). Port won the trophy for the first time in 1899.
FW Bullock City Challenge Cup for Champion Fours was given by Mr FW Bullock, Mayor of Adelaide, in 1892 for the second of the Association’s champion four’s races. The trophy was won first by PARC with the crew of TW Plaisted (B), A Lewis (2), W Wooldridge (3), JH Clouston (S) and C Sweeney (Cox).
JP Marcus Cup for Champion Junior Eights was donated by Mr JP Marcus in 1926. Jack Marcus, who was a member of Adelaide Rowing Club, became President of Railways Institute Rowing Club after World War 2. He was an Indent Agent and represented Lewbury Trophies. It is believed their insignia is engraved upon the trophy. The first victors were the Torrens Rowing Club from Adelaide and Port.
Kellett Memorial Shield for Champion Maiden Eights was presented by members of the Kellett family to perpetuate the memory of the late Charles Kellett, founder of the Torrens Rowing Club in 1903, and a well known oarsman and coach. The shield was originally allotted between 1926 and 1937 to a one mile Maiden Eight race. From the 12th February 1938 the distance was increased to one and a half miles and the race became the Maiden Eight Championship. The first winners were the Tailem Bend Rowing Club.
Le Hunte Cup for Junior Fours was presented by Sir George Le Hunte, KCMG, Governor of South Australia, in 1903 and was first contested on the 12th December 1903 when it was won by Adelaide Rowing Club.
Webb Memorial Cup was originally presented to the Adelaide Rowing Association by AE Webb, the Honorary Secretary of that Association, on 7th December 1885 as a challenge trophy for outrigger clinker fours. The formation of that Association came about as the SA Rowing Association, founded in 1884, was out of favour with the majority of rowing clubs of that time. On the demise of the ARA, the cup was handed over to the SARA and was allocated for annual competition by Senor Four crews over one mile on the Torrens Lake. When the Torrens course was reduced to two thousand yards in the 1938/39 season, the Webb Memorial Cup race was transferred to the Port River. The first winners in 1885 were the Adelaide Rowing Club.
AE Webb was a Foundation Member of Elders Rowing Club, formed on the 7th February 1882, in Elder Smith & Co. salesroom at Grenfell Street, Adelaide.
Fred Willoughby Memorial Fours for Maiden Oarsmen was presented in 1926 by the sons of Fred Willoughby who was an ardent supporter of rowing. First winner was the Adelaide Rowing Club on the 13th February 1926. The last recorded winner is PARC in 1940 with the crew of LH Thomas (B), J Kinnear (2), MV Coveney (3), W Weaver (S) and CF Turner (Cox).
Port Adelaide Rowing Club
SARA Jubilee Pennant Winners PARC
1880 PA Regatta Trophy was won by “Brittania” with the crew of EC Le Messurier (B), EL Le Messurier (2), T Tulloch (3), E Formby (S) and T Smith (Cox).
1891 PA Regatta Trophy was won by JH Clouston. It became the “Clouston Cup” in 1952 and was presented annually to the rower gaining most points in the season. The first winner in 1952/53 was R Page.
1926 Harris Scarfe Perpetual Trophy was presented to the PARC by Harris Scarfe Ltd. and used for Opening Day races. No winner details.
1927 Adelaide Development Co, Cup was first presented at the Berri Regatta on the 27th December, 1927 for Senior-Junior Fours. It was won by the PARC crew of AJ Hartley (B), A Cormack (2), K White (3), C White (S) and M McKechnie (Cox).
1929 Harry Petersen Cup was presented by H Petersen and won by AJ Hartley in 1929/30. No other details.
1929 Bowen Cup was presented by BL Bowen and the first winners were Port Adelaide with the crew of AJ Hartley (B), F Peterson (2), W Taylor (3), T Jelly (S) and J Barr (Cox).
1934 WH Wallace Perpetual Trophy was presented by Vice Patron WH Wallace for Annual Regatta Maiden Eights. The first winner was Adelaide Rowing Club.
1934 H Everett Memorial Perpetual Cup was presented by BL Bowen for Maiden Fours at the Annual PARC Regatta with the first winners being Tailem Bend Rowing Club.
1934 Captain’s Perpetual Trophy was presented by WS Murch for Tub Slides and the first winners were PARC with the crew of AR Scott (B), RL Hardy (2), D Hendry (3), J Maddern (S) and J Lock (cox). The trophy was subsequently used for the Lightweight Four event.
1935 McMahon Perpetual Trophy was presented by TF & ME McMahon for Senior Fours and the first winner was Torrens Rowing Club.
1936 Centenary Cup was presented by the Port Adelaide Centenary Committee on the 14th November 1936 for annual competition in Senior Eights. No winner details.
1939-45 Memorial Shield was presented by LR Moore & GP Manuel for annual competition by Junior Fours at the PARC Regatta with the first winners being Adelaide Rowing Club.
1947 JP Clausen Shield was presented by JP Clausen for annual competition at the PARC Regatta for Junior Eights. No winner details.
1948 Biglands & Doyle Shield was presented by J Biglands & J Doyle for the highest points gained at internal club races. The first winner in 1948 was F Cockburn.
1948 JH Thomas Memorial Shield was presented by the Wallaroo-Mount Lyell Employee’s Social Club for inter-house rowing at Le Fevre Boys’ Technical School.
1953 David Croston Memorial Award is presented annually to a member showing outstanding club spirit. The first winner in 1953/54 was A Frame.
1954 The Advertiser Cup for the SA Champion Senior Eight was won by PARC.
1970 Coca Cola Cup for the SA Champion Junior Eight was inaugurated at the Port Adelaide Centenary Regatta. No winner details.
1971 PARC Captain’s Trophy is for the most outstanding oarsman. The first winner was J Papagorgio.
1974 Waikerie Rowing Club was presented by Coca Cola Bottlers. No other details.
1992 The Becker Enterprise Trophy is for the most winning points and the first winner in 1992/93 was M Herriman.
1992 Kerry Sawford Memorial Shield is for the PARCs most improved rower and the first winner in 1992/93 was Katie Bishop.
1995 WADA Singles Winner Div 2A. No details
PARC Annual Challenge Elite Eights No details
JS Farrow Trophy is presented annually to the most attentive to training. No details
In June 1940 after some Committee members and oarsmen had volunteered for war service with the Armed Forces, it was expected that competitive rowing would cease. The Committee decided o the 23rd June 1940 to appoint a Wartime Guardians Committee to protect the fleet and funds of the Port Adelaide Rowing Club for the duration of hostilities. The proposal was endorsed at a general meeting on the 17th July 1940.
The men chosen were:
They assisted in controlling financial matters by ML Lewis, the club auditor.
However, the SA Rowing Association decided to continue staging rowing events and on the 19th January 1941 Subsidiary Committee of five, responsible to the Guardians, was appointed to keep rowing alive at Port Adelaide. In fact the Guardians suggested that new members be encouraged to the club for financial reasons.
Due to the deterioration in the war situation the Guardians decided on the 8th March 1942 to suspend rowing operations. The club books were transferred to the Auditor who was asked to attend all future meetings.
When Roly Croston died in December 1942, WS Murch was selected to replace him from the 14th February 1943.
On the 13th January 1946 when members began to return to the club a general meeting appointed an Executive Committee to assist the Guardians in re-establishing activities. On the 27th June 1946 the Guardians handed over the funds and responsibility for the club.
David Nicol Martin
Born on the 16th October 1889
Fourth son of James and Rose Martin of West Newgate, Arbroath, Scotland
He migrated to Australia in 1912 and took up residence in Martin Street, Birkenhead.
His trade was carpenter but he mostly performed foundry work with Simes & Martin in St. Vincent Street, Port Adelaide, until he moved to Osborne to work as a boiler maker’s assistant with a firm installing generating equipment for the Electricity Trust of SA.
Having been reared in a Scottish fishing seaport, Dave was always keenly interested in all kinds of boats and spent many of his leisure hours on Saturday afternoons on Birkenhead wharf watching races. He became interested in rowing when his son David W became a member of the PARC in 1938. In 1940 he was one of the Wartime Guardians appointed to keep watch over the fleet and premises. His was the task of keeping the boats as damp as possible during the summer months. Post-war he was elected one of the Senior Vice Presidents but by that stage his health had deteriorated prematurely to such an extent that he was unable to join in club activities again.
The Virgin Eight
The concept of the Virgin Eight was devised in the mind of Secretary, Dave Croston in July 1940 after the first eight members at the PARC had volunteered and been accepted for war service with the Armed Services. Some of the Army men were already in uniform and it was expected they would soon depart Adelaide and that rowing operations had ceased with the end of the 1939/40 season.
A general farewell party was organised for Saturday 3rd August 1940 and it was at this function that the coloured caricature of the Virgin Eight was presented and hung in the clubroom. The drawing was done by an unknown artist after physical features of the members concerned had been described by Dave Croston. The additional figures of Bob Hardy and Reg Francis were added later. Some were given their real identity or nickname but others were contrived.
Clarence (Clarrie) William James Poynter was actually born in London and worked as a seaman on ships travelling to and from the UK in 1938/39 so he was dubbed “London”.
Born in London on the 4th November 1918 and the son of Clarence and Elsie Poynter he arrived in Australia on the 20th June 1920.
He was educated at Le Fevre Peninsula, Ethelton and Gilles Street schools.
After leaving school during a period when employment was difficult to obtain, Clarrie worked in the country, for APAC Industries, John Shearer and as a seaman in 1938/39 on ships ravelling to and from the UK before his enlistment in July 1940. He served in the AIF in the Northern Territory with the 8th Division Ammunition Sub-Park which was later absorbed by the AASC and saw service at Darwin and Labuan, Borneo. He was demobilised in May 1946.
Clarrie joined the PARC in 1935 as a coxswain and rowed before the war. He resumed his interest in rowing post war and assisted with coaching new members, officiating as Starter for the SARA and in organising Port Adelaide regattas between 1957 and 1961. He held the position of Vice President in the post war period.
After working for the Electricity Trist SA from 1946 to 1956, Clarrie joined the staff of the Port Adelaide City Council where he remained until his retirement in September 1978. He gave valuable service to the Port Adelaide community in a number of capacities, such as:
Justice of the Peace from 1951
Port Adelaide Councillor 1950-56
Secretary – Treasurer Semaphore RSL 1953-54
Secretary Largs Oval Committee 1953-54
Committeeman Le Fevre Community Hospital 12 years
Clarrie was always a conscientious worker and willingly gave his best in tackling any task assigned to him.
Jack Edward Baker was a non active member who frequently gave financial support to the Club when money was short. He was often heard to say “I’ll give a donation” so he was dubbed “Nuffield” after Lord Nuffield, English philanthropist, of that time.
Born in 1911 he was the son of Harry Harold and Elizabeth Baker of 186 Robin Road, Semaphore.
He was educated at Le Fevre Peninsula School.
He was employed by Bennett & Fisher Ltd., Port Adelaide as a clerk.
Jack volunteered for war service with the RAAF, was examined and placed on the RAAF Reserve before August 1940. Unfortunately his release was opposed by the firm, Bennett & Fisher, on the grounds of his importance to the wool trade. Despite frequent requests to the RAAF he was unable to change the situation.
When it was possible to do so after the war he left Bennett & Fisher and worked for an American wool firm in Los Angeles. He later returned to Australia and was working in Western Australia, but he has not been heard of for a number of years.
Jack was not an active oarsman but he was a generous supporter as a Vice President of the Club and regularly attended the club room and social functions.
His main other interest was in football and he had been a very capable player with one of the teams in the Semaphore district.
Jack was deeply concerned by the loss of his close associates, McKiggan and Croston, with whom he had volunteered to serve his country.
Archibald (Arch) Harold Dowsett was the Club masseur. He has not been given an oar and is depicted keeping an eye on the boys. He was always known as “Spike”.
Born in 1901 he was the son of Frederick William Dowsett and Mrs L Dowsett of Langham Place, Portland. He was the husband of Thelma Dowsett and father of Brian.
He was educated at Port Adelaide Central School.
He worked as a stevedore at Port Adelaide.
Arch enlisted in the AIF in June 1940. After training at Woodside with the 27th Battalion he embarked in Melbourne on the 24th November 1940 and was involved in the Syrian campaign against the Vichy French forces. He returned to Australia in March 1942 but his physical condition had been affected during his overseas service. Due to back injuries he found it difficult to carry out manual work.
He resumed with the Club after the war but his condition made it very difficult for him to perform the duties as he wished and he was forced to stop.
Arch’s interest in the sports of rowing and football came through his capability as a masseur. He regularly attended men of Port Adelaide at the rowing and football clubs. In 1937 he was appointed masseur to the SA King’s Cup crew which was successful at Murray Bridge and again for the 1939 race in Brisbane. Arch’s efforts for the oarsmen brought them a feeling of well being.
He went about his work quietly, encouraging the younger ones to look after themselves and was always ready to help with injuries or sore spots.
Malcolm McKiggan was then on the RAAF Reserve. He wanted to be a fighter pilot and descend in spectacular sweeping dives so he became “Ace”. (see Boats and Nominees section for further details)
Peter Burnett Langdon drove a car at Walter & Morris and rarely walked very far. Early military training involved heavy boots and long route marches which caused him to suffer sore feet and resort to appropriate medication so he was named “Champ”.
Born on the 19th February 1911 at Prospect and elder son of Romany and Zoe Langdon of Prospect
He was employed by Walter & Morris Ltd. at Port Adelaide until his enlistment in the AIF on the 26th July 1940.
Peter served with the 2/8th Field Ambulance with which he embarked for the Middle East on the Mauretania from Melbourne on the 21st October 1940. He was involved in action at Tobruk for the full seven month period of the siege. After a rest period in Syria the unit was assembled again for the battle of El Alamein. He returned to Australia on the 37th February 1943 and was next involved in action at Lae and Finschafen, New Guinea, and later at Labuan, Borneo. He was demobilised in December 1945 after which he resumed employment with Walter & Morris and eventually retired in 1976.
Peter’s interest in rowing had originated at St Peters College and from his close association with Dave Croston. He could take an oar if required to make up a crew at training but did not compete. He was Club Secretary from 1935 until 1938 and was Manager for the SA King’s Cup crew at Brisbane in 1939.
He possessed a genial personality, always performed his duties in a friendly manner which made him popular in rowing and trade circles and was a well known identity in Port Adelaide and the building trade.
Peter is fondly remembered at the Club as a polished raconteur and for some of his humorous renditions at social functions.
Dave Croston was then on the RAAF Reserve. After his acceptance he decided to grow a narrow moustache which was exaggerated. (see Boats and Nominees section for further details)
Jack Thomas was Club Captain who wore a set of dentures that did not fir as well as he would have liked, but times were tough and teeth were expensive. His problem was featured. (see Boats and Nominees section for further details)
Dave William Martin was then on the RAAF Reserve and just turned 18 years old. He was the youngest of the group and known to them as “Little Dave”.
Born on the 17th March 1922 at Birkenhead he was the only son of David Nicol and Annie White Martin of 34 Martin Street, Birkenhead.
He was educated at Le Fevre Peninsula and Woodville High Schools
He was employed from 1937 in the Postmaster General’s Department until the time of his enlistment in the RAAF on the 13th August 1940 as a wireless operator.
After training in Melbourne and Sydney he was embarked from Sydney on the 19th March 1941 and served through the Singapore, Sumatra and Java operations before returning to Australia in March 1942. The remainder of his service was spent at Signal Stations in Adelaide and as an instructor in Training Groups in Queensland, Victoria and South Australia teaching Wireless Air Gunners and Navigators. He was demobilised on the 16th January 1946.
Dave joined the Club as a coxswain in 1938 and began as an oarsman in the 1939/40 season rowing in lightweight fours. Opportunity came in January 1940 to row in the Maiden Eight crew which went on to win the first championship for the Club since 1929.
Country service in the Post Office prevented him rowing from 1946-48, but on returning to the city he resumed at the Club in a non active capacity and was elected Vice Captain for 1948/49. He accepted the position of Secretary for the 1949/50 season but served only a short term before resigning because of other personal commitments. Despite his absence from club activities and involvement in yachting with the Grange Sailing Club, he retained a keen interest in the progress of the Club and the success of the members.
Roland (Roly) John Payne Croston a one legged veteran of the Great War was assigned as Coach. He attended regularly on Sunday mornings for a pre lunch appetiser and was given appropriate support to keep his balance.
Born in 1885 he was the husband of Alice Maude Croston and father of David Payne Croston of 16 Collins Street, Exeter
A police constable Roly was employed in the Records Section at SA Police Headquarters in Adelaide because he had a leg amputated as a result of service in the Great War in which he served with the 10th Battalion AIF.
Roly was interested in rowing through the efforts of his son David Payne Croston. He frequently attended the club room on Sunday morning after attending his motor launch “Unity” which was moored nearby. He served on the Committee, often presided at meetings and was one of the Wartime Guardians appointed to attend club affairs from 1940 until he died in December 1942.
Roly was very patriotic, strong in his outlook and forthright in expression. In the pre war years when the Club was a sub tenant with the SA Rowing Association at Jenkins Street, Roly had a vision, “A Home of Our Own”, and he often referred to it at club gatherings. It is certain that, had he been spared, he would have enthusiastically acclaimed the achievement of the post war management committees in establishing the fine clubhouse at Snowden’s Beach.
Bob Hardy was keen on weight lifting and is shown working with bar bells to suit. (see Boats and Nominees section for further details)
Reg Francis was always known as the “Drake” and is shown conveying his favourite response “Never Better”. (see Boats and Nominees section for further details)
The selection of the title seems appropriate.
Members and former members known to have served with the Armed Forces 1939-45
Shannon, DM – DCM, MID
*Killed in Action
In South Australia Ladies’ Rowing Clubs were established mainly on the Torrens River, Adelaide, although country clubs that did compete in the city came from Mannum, Berri and Port Pirie. Some clubs began in the 1890s. They had their own Rowing Association and conducted their regattas separately with the assistance of male regatta officials. In 1914 nine clubs competed at one regatta, namely, Kungari, Koonawarra, Mannum, Port Pirie, Originals, Scarlet Poppy, Sunshine Girls, Weeroa and YWCA. Other clubs known to have existed were Barcarolle and Tartan. They raced Scratch and Senior Fours and Sculls.
The first rowing race for ladies at Port Adelaide was staged at the Port Regatta on New Year’s Day 1886. Upon the instigation of Mr S Malin, Mayor of Port Adelaide, who was looked upon as the champion of women’s rights at that time. The course was from Queen’s Wharf round a buoy off Commercial Wharf, and back to the starting point to be rowed in any class of boat. The first event, won my Misses Lobb and Buesnell, was looked upon rather coldly by some people who did not favour the introduction of the fairer sex.
In April 1924 at Port Adelaide the SA Ladies crew won the interstate race for fours from all the other States except Tasmania. South Australia was represented by the Barcarolle Club which had also won the previous race in Perth in 1923. Rowing in colours chocolate and blue, the crew were Misses ME Donnell (B), A Hill (2), M Thomas (3), J Thomas (S), JJ Foody (Cox) took the lead after a few strokes and were never headed over the three quarter mile course downstream, which was covered in 3 minutes 24 seconds, with a length and a quarter to spare from Victoria and Western Australia.
The Women’s Championship rowing regatta at Port Adelaide in March 1931 attracted considerable attention. The main event was the half mile championship fours and entries came from Port Pirie, Berri, Adelaide and Railways Institute. For the first quarter mile there was little to choose between the crews, but thereafter, Railways gradually controlled the race to win by two and a half lengths from Adelaide, who were handicapped by a heavy coxswain. Port Pirie were third. The winner’s time was 4 minutes 10 seconds. Other races were, Maiden Fours (quarter mile) to Adelaide, Junior Fours (quarter mile) to Railways and Invitation Fours Mixed crews (quarter mile) to W Robins’ boat.
The next interstate Ladies’ Fours championship at Port Adelaide was held on the 27th April 1940. All States, except Western Australia, were represented in the race over three quarters of a mile, for a trophy presented in 1920 by the Queensland Licensed Victuallers’ Association. On that occasion the Tasmanian crew was successful from Queensland, NSW and Victoria in the time of 5 minutes 22 seconds. The SA crew stopped soon after the start when the stroke oar broke.
Women did not become rowing members of the PARC until the 1960s and, unfortunately, very little has been recorded about their activities. Perhaps this was due, in some respect, to the fact that it was not until the 18th December 1974 that the SARA Rule 1 was amended to delete “but no club admitting women to active membership shall be eligible for admission to the Association.”
Charlie Davis was a staunch advocate for the introduction of women to competitive rowing at the Port and there was a certain amount of reticence or opposition. Another factor was that the new clubhouse, opened on the 17th December 1960 was designed for oarsmen; there were no dressing room facilities for women. This meant that when girls did begin to row in the 1960s and 70s they had to come to training dressed in such a way that their outer garments could be easily discarded from over their rowing attire. After training they donned their top cover and went home. It was not until 1986 that Ron Simpson and Colin Trinne built the existing women’s dressing room facilities which are now the equal of those of their male counterparts.
An early crew in the 1961/62 season comprised Colleen Tong (B), Lorraine Mead (2), Annette Ede (3), Anne Goddard (S) and C Davis (Cox and Coach).
Patsy and Susan Egan were sisters who rowed at the Port in the 1970s when the women’s squad obtained a sponsorship from a Rotary group that enabled the girls to purchase their won racing four which they renamed “Rotaree”. Subsequently the women became disenchanted with the conditions at Snowden’s Beach and elected to transfer their activities in the 1970s to the Torrens Lake.
In the 1980s Brenton Terrell initiated the recruitment of a new group of young women by visiting a number of schools, Taperoo, Le Fevre, Henley Beach, Seaton and Port Adelaide Girls, seeking individuals with physique suitable for concentrated rowing training. As a result Carmen Klomp, Anna Ozolins and Kerry Sawford eventually gained scholarships at the SA Sports Institute.
Another Australian women’s four oared championship was not held at Port Adelaide until the 17th April 1966 when the crews representing New Zealand, Victoria, NSW, ACT and South Australia contested the main race over 1000 metres. The NZ crew actually won the race in 3 minutes 44 seconds but it was unable to claim the title as it competed by invitation. Six lengths separated the first and fifth crews. The title was awarded to the Victorians of V Bertrand (B), P Meadth (2), N Healey (3), A Thorne (S) and J Arifovic (Cox).
On the 26th April 1969 the Australian women’s rowing championships were again held at Port Adelaide under the auspices of the SA Women’s Rowing Association and affiliated clubs, Torrens and Port Adelaide.
The regatta officials included, President AC Davis, Secretary Miss G Morrison, Treasurer Mrs P Walsh, Organiser Mrs EM Morrison, Starter DR Swan, Umpire GD Coldwell, Timekeeper CT Williams, Judges J Bollen & F Lodge, Weight Steward R Bradley, Broadcaster JF Ward, Despatch Steward D Edmonds and Recorder R Morrison.
Nine events were contested, Australian lightweight women’s fours, Australian women’s single sculls, Australian women’s fours, National heavyweight junior sculls, National heavyweight junior pairs, National senior pairs, National junior fours, National lightweight senior pairs and National lightweight senior sculls.
Crews from Victoria, NSW and Queensland attended but the only South Australian entry was a heavyweight junior pair from PARC in G Morrison (B), S Morrison (S) and C Davis (Cox). The main race over 1000 metres was won by Victorian YWCA in the record time of 3 minutes 35.5 seconds by three quarters of a length from NSW and Queensland with the crew of K Suhr (B), P Murray (2), N Geer (3), P Gilbertson (S) and A McLaren (Cox).
The 48th Women’s Championships and National club championships were held at Snowden’s Beach on the 27th April 1974. There were three events in the morning and eight in the afternoon.
Regatta officials were, President Mrs E Morrison, Secretary J Manglesdorf, Assistant Secretary L Cummins, Starter D Swan, Umpires P Cudmore & G Coldwell, Judges J Ward & F Lodge, Aligners A Smithson & R Lawrence, Timekeepers K Coldwell & R Simpson, Weight Steward D Melville, Announcer P Manglesdorf and Recorder D Bland.
The Australian four oared championship over 1000 metres was won in 3 minutes 35 seconds and by two and a half lengths by NSW from Victoria, Western Australia, South Australia and ACT. The SA crew was J Fairbrother (B), D Wiebricht (2), K Hanrahan (3), R Corner (S) and T Cocks (Cox).
The National club junior four championship was won by Corio from University WA, Sydney, PARC and YWCA Sydney by one and a quarter lengths in 3 minutes 42 seconds.
The PARC junior four crew was Z Kazemionka (B), T Brown (2), L Cummins (3), J Manglesdorf (S) and C Davis (Cox and Coach).
The PARC junior pair crew was L Cummins (B), J Manglesdorf (S) and C Davis (Cox and Coach).
Two women rowers who began rowing with PARC before entering the SA Sports Institute and reaching the level of international competition were, Carmel Klomp and Anna Ozolins. Both persons were invited to submit personal details for inclusion in this record but the approach brought no response.