Monday 5 August 2019

Our 1969 banner made by Dale Dengate

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Woman's Day, October 6, 1969 - Eileen Thornhill Collection

Banner, 2019
1969 Tuena festival, Dale is sitting on the tail of the truck playing the bones. A sash is attached to the bottom of the banner & Elaine Thornhill is wearing a shiny new sash.
BMC also went to the neighbouring gold town Trunkey Creek on one or both of these visits, although there is no reference to the visit to Trunkey Creek in the Newsletter. Copies of this photo in Archives are labelled either Tuena or Trunkey Creek.


email from Dale Dengate, 11th March 2019
BMC went to both places. I didn’t think I went to Trunkey creek, but did go to Tuena. John wrote a song about it as Jamie (Carlin) rolled the car and Eric and Wilma (Bolton) had a car accident on way into the little place. Roads were twisty, unsealed and there was no street lighting. In the parade, we all sat on the back of a ute and when the driver drove up the embankment we nearly all tumbled off and Ken (Greenhalgh), the flautist did. No health and safety regulations then!!!
It was 1967, the Easter before Lachlan was born and we won a sash. This is why we needed a banner and I attached the sash (1968). Then the next year we won another, but I wasn’t there. In some photos Elaine (Thornhill), with largerphone, wears the sash we won. I later attached that. These ‘villages’ were roadside shops and a few houses straggling along the main road and over the hill, in the 1960s. They had been huge during the gold rush. I wonder what they look like now..?

Trunkey Creek 1937, probably not much different 30 years later
The Story of the Banner

Dale Dengate made the banner when Concert Party was heading to the Easter 1968 Tuena Gold Rush Festival, as the Club didn't have a banner. She was pregnant with Lachlan, who was born on the 3rd April - 9 days before the Festival. She had taken it to hospital with her, but didn't quite finish it with a baby and a toddler to fill her time - one letter is still tacked!

The banner was made of materials available in most households of the day - headcloth (used for children's clothes & sewing projects at school), bias binding, felt & knitting wool, and was hung using an old gym cord.
The Club was awarded a sash, and another one on their return trip in 1969, and these sashes were attached to the banner. A pennant from another visit, to the 4th Grabben Gullen Sapphire Safari in 1971 was also attached to the banner.
A photo from the 1969 parade featured in Woman's Day, October 1969, and on the cover of
Health in New South Wales, Summer 1972 (NSW Dept of Health)  The lagerphonist, Elaine Wood (nee) Thornhill is wearing the newest Tuena sash.
April 1968 newsletter
Concert Party will be at Tuena Gold Rush Celebrations Easter weekend. Celebrations include a beard growing competition.

May 1968 newsletter
Concert Party participated in Tuena Gold Rush procession & won a sash for best float. Flute player almost fell off the float on a steep embarkment!

Eric Bolton (cut off), John Dengate, Jamie Carlin, Ken Greenhalgh (flute), Elaine Thornhill, Dave Small, Harry Glendenning (BMC archives)

Aug1968 newsletter

Concert Party has been booked for Tuena again so cannot attend Morton Bay Folk Festival Easter 1969. Incidentally there are some excellent photos of the group at Tuena taken last Easter by Morris.


May 69 newsletter
Report on Tuena which was a great success & the Club won another ribbon for our banner in the procession. Banner will probably be used twice again this year - Argyle Centenary celebrations on May 10th, & Waratah Festival. Report on Tuena - new members Bill Woolard, Mr & Mrs Leabeater - Charlie Leadbeater played at Lyndhurst country balls & provided his calls for The Lancers (published on page 3 of the newsletter)

(Woman's Day, Oct 6th, 1969, BMC archives)


In between visits to Festivals & other performances, the banner lived at the Dengate house until it moved to Tritton Hall where it gathered dust between outings, and eventually moved to the Bolton household.

In June 1994 an unsuccessful appeal went out in Mulga Wire for another banner.

Concert Party, c.1999 (BMC archives)
Over the years after the heavy sashes were attached, the headcloth tore & the banner was filthy & badly damaged when it surfaced again in 2012 in the run-up to our 60th Anniversary so I cleaned and repaired it and mounted it on a strong old linen sheet for use again.

more photos -
Conservation & repair of banner

After use at 60th Anniversary events, it was then stored rolled up in acid free tissue in my wardrobe until I had it framed and it is now back in the Hut.

Conservation pics - Sandra Nixon


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