BIG RESPONSE TO MECKERING EARTHQUAKE ANNIVERSARY

A reunion of the Meckering premiership football team of 1968 has boosted registrations for the gathering to mark 40 years since the earthquake that devastated the town.

The team celebrated its win with a function in the town hall two days before the building was destroyed by the earthquake.

Spokesperson for the anniversary organizing committee, Sandie Laird, said it was wonderful that it had been possible to have the reunion as part of the get together on October 4.

¡°The response has been excellent with people coming from as far away as Townsville in Queensland, Bordertown in South Australia and throughout WA. ¡°The train from Perth has been confirmed and will arrive at 10.00am and leave at 3.45pm, she said.

A highlight of the day would be the official opening of the memorial rose garden. It features a doorframe held up by a small section of wall. The symbolic structure is modelled on a door and frame left standing after the earthquake in a house owned by Alice and Graham Snooke, Sandie said.

Other features of the day would be short talks by residents and former residents about their experience. These include former police officer, Des Skehan; Roadhouse operator, Gwen Wiley; farmer, Greg Morrell; schoolteacher, Jeff Dyer and emergency worker, Barbara Kelly.

Joy Kelly who was about to give birth to twins, Suzanne Dunne who was in York and trying desperately to contact her family in Meckering and Eddie Fleay representing the 1968 football team would also relate their stories. There would be tours of earthquake sites and  two special cakes made by Dorothy Elliott would be cut, she said.

It is essential for people planning to visit Meckering to contact the organizers to ensure they get lunch. Sandie can be contacted on 9625 1325. More information and registration forms are available at www.meckeringearthquake.net

Story & photographs below by Lindsay McNeill

 

WEBPAGE: The remains of a house destroyed on a farm near the Meckering earthquake fault line.

BOTTOM RIGHT: A section of railway line buckled by the earthquake.

TOP: Meckering Hotel soon after the earthquake struck MIDDLE: fault line through local paddock.

Photographs above courtesy of C. Wadley www.thebigcamera.com.au