PORT MACQUARIE-HASTINGS HISTORY 1968
Council Chambers opened
Port Macquarie’s Municipal Council was praised by the State Minister for Local Government, Mr P. H. Morton, MLA, when he officially opened the council’s new administrative building in Hay Street on Friday. The occupation of more spacious and better equipped premises is long overdue and what you have here will make an important contribution to the efficiency of your undertaking and the standard of service given to the community, said Mr Morton.
The former Palace Motel has been transformed into a spacious and serviceable administrative building and the furnishings and fittings won praise from those who attended today’s opening ceremony. The Minister for Local Government showed his approval, too, when he announced a government grant of $2000 towards the furnishings. This is in addition to the $5000 previously granted by the State Government towards Port Macquarie’s sesquicentenary celebrations.
New temple soon
Tenders will be called this month for the construction of a new Masonic Temple in Port Macquarie. This was announced on Saturday afternoon by Dr N.E. McLaren at a civic reception held in the new Council Chambers. Dr McLaren was endorsing the mayor, Ald C.C. Adams’, address of welcome to the deputy grand master of the United Grand Lodge of NSW Freemasons, Rt Wor Bro R. Hammond and the three Grand Lodge officers who accompanied him. With a new Council Chambers now a reality and a new post office planned, Dr McLaren said it was fitting that, in its 19th year in Port Macquarie, Freemasonry should have a new headquarters. In the town’s 150th year, Dr McLaren said it was interesting to recall that its discoverer, John Oxley, was a Freemason belonging to a lodge chartered under the Irish Constitution. It was a lodge of this constitution that became the first craft lodge to function in New South Wales.
John Oxley’s Troop
The Editor – Dear Sir. I would be grateful if you would grant me space in your paper to say something about the John Oxley Troop which took part in the Sesqui (sic) Celebrations. My main reason for writing this is to give the citizens of Port Macquarie and Wauchope, along with all those visitors attending the celebrations, some idea of just what the organisation of some 16 horsemen involved. I think it is fitting to mention the help and encouragement we received as we journeyed from the top of Mt Seaview. from where we could see the sea looking out towards Port Macquarie. In all, we rode some 100 miles, having first to get our horses from the top end of the Forbes River and Yarras, and proceed to the summit of Mount Seaview and then wend our way down again, following the Hastings Valley and finally arriving at Port Macquarie in readiness for the final celebrations. This involved six days in the saddle, excluding two days rest at Wauchope over the weekend. We stayed at Wauchope until the Monday and then made our way to Port. On Tuesday, we rode into Port Macquarie via the old convict road to be in readiness for the final celebrations arriving in town about 11am. Yours faithfully E.A.(Dick) Buchanan.