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Byron Shire
May 20, 2024

Bangalow’s Heritage House reopens Saturday

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A concert in the 1970s, held at the Fowler farm. Photo supplied

The President of Bangalow Historical Society, Trisha Bleakley, is soliciting.

That is, she’s looking for anyone with an interest in local history to attend a grand reopening of Heritage House, the home of the Bangalow Historical Society, and the place where its many treasures are kept.

After several years of dormancy during covid, through the floods and beyond, the grand reopening will take place at Heritage House, Deacon Street, Bangalow, on Saturday, February 25 from 10am till 12 noon.

‘There’s been a great deal of interest brewing, both about the reopening of Heritage House itself and also the ‘resurrection’ of the Historical Society,’ said Trisha.

A concert in the 1970s, held at the Fowler farm. Photo supplied

‘We’re inviting anyone to come along who is curious about the evolution of Bangalow. We also see Heritage House’s facilities, set in these lovely parklands, becoming an excellent community hub, available for the use of any local group.’

One drawcard to the event will be the launch of a book, New Growth in Old Paddocks, designed specifically for release at the event.

‘Showcasing elements of Bangalow’s history in an innovative way, the book is primarily pictorial, and balances the abstract and reality, using historical images of Bangalow,’ according to its author Terry Bleakley (yes, history is very much a family interest).

‘It will be a wonderful keepsake for anyone interested in how much the district has changed over the decades.’

All proceeds from the sale of the book will go to the Bangalow Historical Society.

An exhibition of the life and times of Bangalow old-timer, Harry Fowler (1904-1988), will also be launched.

It traces the history of the Fowler family farm on Fowlers Lane, from the time when it was bought in 1906 from the Garvan Estate, through to the present day.

As well as rare images copied from photo albums of the Fowler family, the exhibition follows happenings on the farmland.

Advertising a concert at the Fowler farm. Photo supplied

Fowler concerts

In the 1970s and 1980s, well-loved identity Harry Fowler allowed Byron Shire’s earliest pop concerts to be held around the dance hall that he and his brothers built in the 1950s, with early appearances – it is said – from Rose Tattoo, Misex, Midnight Oil, and even Slim Dusty’s daughter, Anne Kirkpatrick.

Many locals have fond memories of the festivals held there by Sleepy Creek, attended by thousands.

For more information about the reopening, contact Trisha Bleakley on 0429 882 525.

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