2024 Toodyay Agricultural Show getting closer

Toodyay Agricultural Society 

By Alison Wroth – Chief Steward 

HALFWAY through the year and our new committee members are either both overwhelmed and inspired with understanding what it takes to pull a historical Agricultural Show of this standard together; or hopefully just enjoying being involved in the “Show” at last.

At present, we have many activities on the boil including the maintenance of the show bar building and organisation of the 170th Toodyay Show “Dance Through the Decades” at the Memorial Hall, being the main ones.

Regarding the latter, held every ten years, we owe it to the show dance to celebrate in style people and dress up to dance the night away while we acknowledge the history of the coming Toodyay Agricultural Show in October.

A connection to the show will be such links as food vans outside in Federation Square and lovely festoon lighting.

There will be many more surprises so make sure you purchase those tickets.

At least consider SAVE THE DATE 31st August 2024 for a night to remember with friends, drinks, and good music; something that we do not get the chance to see in the Memorial Hall often enough. Single $100 and $170 for a couple.  Cocktail dress is the code and gourmet canapes are the menu of the night.

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12,000 people attend fabulous 40th Moondyne Festival

By Jean Melhuish-Hill
WE ARE not sure we could have asked for a better day to celebrate the 40th anniversary
of Toodyay’s highly popular Moondyne Festival.

It’s estimated that over 12,000 people attended on the day.

It was a very big crowd, and apart from many locals enjoying the day, we had people come from the surrounding Wheatbelt  as well as many travelling from Perth, Rockingham, Mandurah and other towns.

The large crowd arrived by train, car and bus to enjoy the festival and what Toodyay has to offer.

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No money to fix patched up bridge

By Sean Hefferon
LAST month the Shire of Toodyay Council was to consider the approval of the reconstruction of bridge 4085, otherwise known as Slaughterhouse Bridge which is located on Toodyay West Road.

The timber bridge which was built in 1937 and spans Toodyay Brook is a single lane only 4.2 metres in width.

Unlike the Clackline Bridge also timber and built in 1935, the local bridge is not listed on the Heritage Council of Western Australia’s Register of Heritage Places.

The prospect of Bridge 4085 being rebuilt has been live since a 2021 report by Main Roads WA found “significant deterioration in the timber elements of the support structure of the bridge”.

In 2023 Main Roads advised the Shire of possible options to limit bridge loading and that design work had commenced to replace the bridge.

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Taylor hits the footy big time

TALENTED football player Taylor Ferguson hit another milestone in her promising WAFL Women’s career when she was selected to play for Western Australia last month.

Now in its sixth season, Western Australia met South Australia at the Optus Stadium on Saturday May 4 when our Women’s State Team took on the SANFL Women in a landmark Women’s State Game.

In what was a historic first State Game, the SANFL took out the honours by 16 points in
a tightly contested game that will become an annual event.

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Lest we forget

OVER 400 people faced a cold morning to attend this year’s Dawn Service at Toodyay’s Anzac Memorial Park.

Local violinist Rupert Guenther played the Last Post as cadets lowered flags to half-mast.

The Anzac Dedication was read by Toodyay RSL President Max Howard.


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Knockdominie scandal ended first magistrate’s career

Robyn Taylor, Vice President
Toodyay Historical Society Inc

Knockdominie cottage, c.1838. Photo:W&D Clarke

IN LAST month’s column brief reference was made to Rica Erickson’s draft history on Toodyay’s Resident Magistrates, the first being Captain Francis Whitfield who was appointed in 1838, although the year 1839 is also given.

The following is based on Rica’s draft, her book ‘Old Toodyay & Newcastle’ and other sources.

To recap, Captain Whitfield was a veteran of the Napoleonic Wars and had retired to Ireland with his family.

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My great-grandpa Jack ─ the Mapmaker of Colditz

by Clive Millett

I WOULD like to pay tribute to my greatgrandfather, Jack Millett, who served with the 2nd/11th battalion from 1941 to 1945.

During his time in WA prior to the war, Jack had joined the army reserve.

This meant he was an officer by the time he joined his unit in North Africa and went to battle in Italian-occupied Libya and Tobruk.

The battalion was then sent to Greece, where they were pursued relentlessly by German troops, until they were forced to evacuate to the island of Crete.

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Lions eat Bulldogs and Blues in foot season opener

Toodyay Football Club May 2024 Update
by Patrick Thompson

THE SEASON opener for the Toodyay Football Club was a success with both league and reserves recording two wins from two games.

First up was an away match to Dalwallinu on April 13.

The reserves match was a see-sawing affair with both sides kicking a run of goals as momentum swung.

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Local cat law kicked down road

AT LAST month’s council meeting elected members voted on adopting the Shire of Toodyay Cat Local Law 2024. The officer’s recommendation was that council adopt the law the purpose of which is to improve the permit conditions, definitions of nuisance behaviour, modification of penalties, and to continue to provide the Shire of Toodyay with measures in addition to those under the Cat Act 2011 to control the keeping of cats.

The matter was debated with Cr Madacsi proposing an alternate motion that the item be deferred because due to other pressing matters the local laws had not been given enough attention.

The officers recommendation was not supported and Cr Madacsi’s alternate motion was endorsed,7-0.

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Black Dog One-Dayer roars through Avon Valley

THE BLACK Dog Ride ‘One-Dayer’ is an annual one-day motorcycle ride held in more than 50 communities across Australia on Sunday 17 March 2024.

The local One-Dayer is called the Avon Valley Black Dog Ride and saw 71 riders meet at the Mount Helena Tavern before departing for a leisurely meander through valley back roads.

After a brief leg stretch at the Grass Valley Tavern the two-and-a-half-hour ride finished in Toodyay – with the total ride distance being 160km.

Riders, support crew, locals and dignitaries including State Opposition Leader and local MP, Shane Love, then enjoyed an afternoon of chat and camaraderie for a lunch, cooked by Toodyay Locals Care, and post ride refreshments at the Toodyay Club.

The Avon Valley One-Dayer, after a pause for a few years, has been back and running
Black Dog One-Dayer roars through Avon Valley since 2020.

Local ride coordinator, Wes Sutton, said, “After I signed up for the One-Dayer in 2018 and discovered the Avon Valley ride wasn’t operating, I attended the Baldivis ride for a couple of years as it was the only ride out of Perth at the time.

“Recognising the need for a ride to accommodate those living in the eastern and northern suburbs, I approached Black Dog Ride and took on the role of Avon Valley coordinator.”

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