Wendy Bowman & Goldman Environmental Prize

Wendy Bowman & Goldman Environmental Prize

Featured Image: Wendy Bowman courtesy of the Sydney Morning Herald

See: https://www.smh.com.au/environment/hunter-valley-woman-wendy-bowman-83-awarded-the-goldman-environmental-prize-20170423-gvqj1f.html

See: https://www.newcastleherald.com.au/story/4614818/wendy-bowman-wins-global-award/

See: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CHXjbqwArGE

Prologue

Wendy Bowman is my souse Sarah’s first cousin and has a marital ‘double cross’ (in stock-breeding vernacular) of two scion pioneer grazing families in the Hunter Valley. On the dam’s side she is the granddaughter of early immigrant Charles Boyce Mackay (http://mncp.scss.dyndns.info/individual.php?pid=I51733&ged=mncp.ged), and daughter of Charles Mackenzie Mackay (http://mncp.scss.dyndns.info/individual.php?pid=I51738&ged=mncp.ged). Her mother Alice D Mackay, known as ‘Woogie’, had five siblings, six in all known as Jack, Ken, Bob, Bill and Olympian swimmer Kitty.

See: http://sconevetdynasty.com.au/mackay-family-history/ and http://sconevetdynasty.com.au/kitty-mackay-olympian/

Young Wendy Peters married Mick Bowman; direct descendant of one branch of the ground-breaking Bowman patriarchs in the Upper Hunter Valley. The rest as they (may) say in the classics is history.

Epilogue

Despite all the best efforts of the admirable ‘Mine-Watch’ cadre spear-headed by ‘Boadicea’ Wendy Bowman it appears that the extraction giant has actually prevailed? My good friend and professional colleague the late Gavin Gidley-Baird was also a talisman for this admirable initiative; at great personal cost to himself. The NEH betwixt Singleton and Muswellbrook has become the very essence of ‘the road to success paved with best intentions’. Perhaps I’m a trite morbid/maudlin? Did anyone say Pyrrhic; or even KFC?

Branga Prudence

Branga Prudence

Acknowledge: Australian Stock Horse Society 40th Anniversary Compendium

Featured Image: ‘Branga Prudence’ & Bert Griffith: one of the founding members of the Australian Stock Horse Society

See: https://www.ashs.com.au/the-society/about-us/about-us/

See also: http://sconevetdynasty.com.au/australian-stock-horse-society-40th-anniversary-compendium/

Bert Griffith’s father managed Branga Plains at Walcha for W H Mackay Snr. Following the sale of the property in 1929 the Griffith family removed to the Mackay family home at ‘Anambah’ neat Maitland. ‘Young Bert’ shifted to Scrumlo, Rouchel Aberdeen NSW; also in Mackay family ownership. He was instructed to bring two horses with him. The best of these was Branga Prudence, by TB sire Port Rush out of Gentle Annie.

‘Branga Prudence’ established herself as a foundation mare of the iconic Scrumlo line of Australian Stock Horses. She announced herself to the community with a brilliant if unexpected win in the Open Handicap at a bush race meeting at Rouchel; ‘unexpected’ because she appeared to Brian Brooker to be grossly underdone? Bert’s daughter Mary Griffith remarked that bush race meetings were a passion for her father. He and his brother Jim were highly successful. Mary explained that nearly all the Branga horses were thoroughbred because of the flatter country around Walcha. Most of them were by Port Rush or Secundas.

At Scrumlo Bert Griffith shared the single accommodation with another great local horseman, Reg Watts. The latter achieved immortal fame through his association with the legendary campdraft mare ‘Norma’. By the 1930s Bert Griffith was Manager of Scrumlo for F K ‘Darby’ Mackay establishing a friendship which lasted for over 50 years; ceasing only with the advent of Bert’s death.

Branga Prudence became highly influential in the Australian Stock Horse Stud Book. She is the grand-dam of two Foundation Mares, SCRUMLO NITA – FM and SCRUMLO BRANGA PRUDENCE – FM, the great grand-dam of  the Impact Stallion SCRUMLO VICTORY – IS and Impact Mare RAY’S GIFT – IM.

Bert Griffith was fundamentally instrumental in the very beginning. He corresponded with Alex Braid of Wellington and together they forged a series of meetings culminating in the founding of the Society. Both men were motivated to ‘preserve the breeding and identity of our Australian Stock Horses’. The inaugural meeting was convened at the Belmore Hotel, Scone in March 1971 to test the support they had for this idea.

The first General Meeting was held at the Sydney Royal Easter Show in April 1971. RAS of NSW Ringmaster J K ‘Ken’ Mackay chaired this meeting. A steering committee of 18 men was set up. Bert’s daughter Mary Griffith was appointed inaugural Secretary/Treasurer. The first ‘Head Office’ of the Society was the shed at the back of Mary’s residence in Main Street, Scone. Later a garage was purchased in Kelly Street and converted into a purpose built Head Office. Mary also served as Secretary of the Scone Race Club at about this time which is where I first made her acquaintance. Our friendship endured.

Founding Member Bryant Gavin of ‘Wansey’, Cumnock was elected as foundation President of the Australian Stock Horse Society. In 1973 both Bert Griffith and Alex Braid were inducted as the first Honorary Life Members of the Society.

Sire Premiership Tables 2014/2015 to 2019/2020 (as at 13/04/2020)

Sire Premiership Tables 2014/2015 to 2019/2020 (as at 13/04/2020)

Acknowledge: https://www.bloodstock.com.au/bloodstock/sire-premiership-table.php

See also: http://sconevetdynasty.com.au/digests-from-world-turf-writers-1950/

See also: http://sconevetdynasty.com.au/shuttle-service-worries-1995/

Prologue

“Lies, Damned Lies and Statistics”. Mark Twain popularized this quote in his autobiography when he wrote: “There are three kinds of untruth: Lies, damned lies and statistics.” Although he attributed the quote to Benjamin Disraeli, 1st Earl of Beaconsfield, KG, PC, FRS there is no evidence the quote originated with his Lordship. The latter was a British politician of the Conservative Party who twice served as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom. This is all about statistics; although I’m no Lord Beaconsfield! Another ‘laborious’ aphorism is that ‘all comparisons are odious’? So be it.

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Roy Masters & Maynard Keynes

Roy Masters & Maynard Keynes

See: https://www.smh.com.au/sport/how-to-win-fans-or-at-least-keep-them-in-the-age-of-no-sport-20200402-p54gfh.html

Featured Image: Maynard Keynes (‘The New York Times’) and Roy Masters

Prologue

I’m greatly intrigued when a sports journalist, albeit an educated and erudite one, liberally quotes one of the arguably greatest International Economists of the 20th Century? Maynard Keynes had possibly one rival in the Western World in John Kenneth Galbraith?

Roy Masters is no slouch himself and is the product of a multi-talented family of genuine polymaths. Maynard Keynes was a member of the ‘Bloomsbury Set’ in peri-WWI in London. He boasted unusual early proclivities but eventually married Lydia Lopokova , a Prima Ballerina in Diaghilev’s ‘Ballet Russe de Monte-Carlo’. I question she would have been to Roy Master’s taste but then Roy was more ‘Sydney Push/NRL’ and Germaine Greer/Clive James than ‘Bloomsbury’. However I’ve no doubt he could have communicated effectively with the likes of other ‘Bloomsberries’; Virginia and Leonard Woolf, Vanessa Bell, Aldous Huxley, Roger Fry and perhaps even Lytton Strachey + Dora Carrington? Duncan Grant? However I digress.

I especially liked Roy’s analogies in the following ‘masterpiece’. Read on.

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Tocal Stud and Charles Reynolds

Tocal Stud and Charles Reynolds

Featured Image: Frank Reynolds Sydney Mail 1920

There is little doubt that the original pioneer leviathans of thoroughbred breeding in the Hunter Valley were Charles Reynolds (1806 – 1871) and his son Frank Reynolds (1848 – 1920). The latter was a close confidante of the ‘Gentle Giant from Clarence Town’ Bruce Lowe. Together they formulated the seminal tome ‘Breeding Racehorses by the Figure System’. No-one tells the story better than Ian Ibbett; so I’ll leave the detail to him.

See: https://kingsoftheturf.com/1888-william-gannon-frank-reynolds-and-the-tocal-stud/

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Bert Griffith

Bert Griffith

Acknowledge: Australian Stock Horse Society 40th Anniversary Compendium

Featured Image: Mr Herbert (Bert) Griffith, one of the founding members of the Australian Stock Horse Society

See: https://www.ashs.com.au/the-society/about-us/about-us/

See also: http://sconevetdynasty.com.au/australian-stock-horse-society-40th-anniversary-compendium/

Personal Prelude:

The 50th anniversary of the founding of the Australian Stock Horse Society will take place next year (2021). I write this encomium to one of its pivotal pioneers; while I still can. Bert Griffith was ‘essential’ as an inaugural proponent. The Australian Stock Horse Society is a very ‘Scone thing’ despite a few desultory claims to the contrary. Its genesis is closely linked to a veritable Scone institution of the day. I refer to the Fat Stock Cattle Sales every Tuesday of the year; with very few exceptions. Following the sales many ‘out-of-town’ cattle producers decamped to the Belmore Hotel for social and other discourse. See: http://sconevetdynasty.com.au/the-tuesday-boozers-club/ . The ‘exclusives’ had their own club at the weeks ends which was polo.

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Sydney Olympic Games Opening Ceremony 2000

Sydney Olympic Games Opening Ceremony 2000

Acknowledge: Australian Stock Horse Society 40th Anniversary Compendium & article by Kerry Grey

Featured Image: ‘Lone Horseman’ Steve Jefferys on “Woomera”

See: https://www.ashs.com.au/the-society/about-us/about-us/

See also: http://sconevetdynasty.com.au/australian-stock-horse-society-40th-anniversary-compendium/

See also: http://sconevetdynasty.com.au/heritage-horse-ride-olympics-2000/

See also: http://sconevetdynasty.com.au/olympic-games-defining-moments/

See also: http://sconevetdynasty.com.au/australia-on-horseback-at-sydney-olympic-games-2000/

The tribute to the Australian Stock Horse during the 2000 Sydney Olympics Opening Ceremony was a moment the world will never forget. An audience of more than 3.7 billion people watched as Steve Jefferys galloped into the stadium, reared and cracked his whip. A further 140 horses were ridden into the Stadium and performed intricate formations to a specially written version of ‘The Man from Snowy River’ theme by Australian composer Bruce Rowland.

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Spring Valley Heritage Horse Ride 2000

Spring Valley Heritage Horse Ride 2000

Acknowledge: Australian Stock Horse Society 40th Anniversary Compendium & article by Kerry Grey

Featured Image: Spring Valley Heritage Horse Ride Map(s)

(31/03/2020: I’ve just realised that the colour-coding window of the two main rides is ‘inverted’? The North Ride should be GREEN and the South Ride MAGENTA?)

See: https://www.ashs.com.au/the-society/about-us/about-us/

See also: http://sconevetdynasty.com.au/australian-stock-horse-society-40th-anniversary-compendium/

See also: http://sconevetdynasty.com.au/heritage-horse-ride-olympics-2000/

See also: http://sconevetdynasty.com.au/olympic-games-defining-moments/

See also: http://sconevetdynasty.com.au/australia-on-horseback-at-sydney-olympic-games-2000/

Personal Prelude: It’s my purview that this grand epic ranks right up there with some of the greatest Australian totems such as the Durack’s ‘Kings in Grand Castles’ epic and the Nat Buchanan droving fables. Its breathtaking stratospheric vision is legendary in its own right. I enjoy a somewhat smug satisfaction in acknowledging ‘locals’ Neville Holz and Joy Poole plus my very good friend and professional colleague Chris Johnson as veritable pioneering prodigies.

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STANTON STUD DODGE – FS

STANTON STUD DODGE – FS

Acknowledge: Australian Stock Horse Society 40th Anniversary Compendium

See: https://www.ashs.com.au/the-society/about-us/about-us/

See also: http://sconevetdynasty.com.au/australian-stock-horse-society-40th-anniversary-compendium/

In equal eighth position with over 7,500descendants is the stallion/gelding STANTON STUD DODGE – FS. This horse was foaled in 1964, and his conception like everything else about him unusual.

E H ‘Tiger’ Batterham had a very good mare by Dimray called Glamour, and Tiger had purchased a stallion by Radium called Rayon. John Stanton approached Tiger and offered him £100 for a foal out of Glamour by Rayon.

Tiger said, ‘I would never have mated those two horses as I would have considered the bloodlines too close, but I was to be proved very wrong. In those days £100 for a horse, let alone a foal, was an amazing amount of money, so I agreed to breed the foal’.

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ABDUL – IS

ABDUL – IS

Acknowledge: Australian Stock Horse Society 40th Anniversary Compendium

See: https://www.ashs.com.au/the-society/about-us/about-us/

See also: http://sconevetdynasty.com.au/australian-stock-horse-society-40th-anniversary-compendium/

Those who had the privilege of seeing ABDUL – IS in the campdraft arena will never forget the incredible athleticism of this great horse. Foaled in February, 1964 at Comara Station on the North Coast of New South Wales, ABDUL – IS was bred by the great horseman and stud master, Theo Hill.

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