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Chapter 1
Chapter 2
Chapter 3
Chapter 4
Chapter 5
Chapter 6
Chapter 7
Chapter 8
Chapter 9
Chapter 10
Chapter 11
Chapter 12
Chapter 13
Chapter 14
Chapter 15
Chapter 16
Chapter 17
Chapter 18



The Melbourne Bushies - Fifty years along the track (1940-90)

Even though we have been transported to and from walks by picnic van for many many years, we used to have more public transport trips - Athol Schafer used to read Edgar Alan Poe horror stories aloud to while away the time. One walk we were to meet on the Spencer Street Railway platform for the trip to Woodend. We stood around for a long while waiting for John Brownlie the leader. When he didn't turn up Robin Mitchell suggested that we proceed to the train. We all boarded and took up seats and as we moved off some of the party looked out of the window and there was Brownlie in another train going the opposite way. Further along the way another look out of the window and there was our illustrious leader on a pushbike pedalling like fury - he had commandeered some kid's bike to catch up with the train. He finally was united with his party and had the job of returning the bike after the walk. Another walk saw Nick Cole frantically pedalling along-side the train which he had missed. He never did catch up with the party.

Rex and Sue Filson

constructed to reduce this problem and there is no longer such a delay. September brought a ban on smoking on all transport hired by MBW. Neither was alcohol to be carried on Club trips unless such trip were deemed a social occasion. The conservation movement began a push to stop subdivision of 48,000 acres in the Little Desert. This ultimately brought about the creation of the Little Desert National Park and established the political power of the developing Green Movement.

A rumour that the Club room at 161 Flinders Lane might soon become unavailable surfaced mid-year 1969. A subcommittee of Rex Filson, Robin Mitchell, Liz Shaw and myself was formed to look for new premises. The need became pressing when the Club received short notice to quit. While the subcommittee looked at various prospects, including buying our own premises, the Club went back to its old Club room at Room 110, VRI building. The problem was finally solved by joining with the MAWTC to rent the Club room in Hosier Lane at the rear of the Forum Theatre. As there was only one meeting room and the MAWTC met on Fridays, the change to Wednesday night meetings, decided hack in 1967, was finally implemented.

Club membership remained steady for much of the decade, hovering around 125 members with an increase to about 170 in the last couple of years. During the 1960s many walking areas were opened up by forestry roads. This development, combined with more members acquiring cars, made weekend walking possible in areas hitherto accessible only on extended walks.