Wauchope RSL Sub-branch celebrated it’s 100 year Anniversary on 20th Nov 2018 and marked the occasion with a black tie military style dinner at Wauchope RSL Club on Saturday 17th November.
Several WW1 men held an informal meeting on 19th Sep 1918 at School of Arts , Wauchope and formally raised the Sub-branch on 17.11.1918 with Branch motto of “Second to None” and meetings were conducted in various locations over ensuing years. First President was R J Pead and Secretary A F Bonner. The Branch relied upon local hoteliers to provide meeting refreshments as it did not have a liquor licence for some years. The Sub-branch later gained a liquor licence which it subsequently sold to the Wauchope RSL Club.
In the early 50’s the Wauchope RSL Club opened a joint Club house with the RSL Sub –Branch and the Sub-branch then gained a permanent home, a partnership that remains today.
The difficulty in running the joint operation of the RSL Club and RSL Sub-Branch with complications of who controlled which parts of the operations and the building led to discussions in 1987 to sell the Sub-branch property and licenses to the RSL Club.
Matters moved slowly until June 2000 when sale of the property was completed.
Conditions of sale provided for a Sub-branch meeting room, admin services from the RSL office, memorabilia display area, playing of the ODE daily at the RSL and support by the RSL Club of Anzac Day and other national parade days.
The sale meant that the Sub-branch could then pay greater attention to members welfare and social needs and the RSL Club Ltd could be professionally managed to become the vibrant social hub that is the Club of 2018.
The Sub-branch has a membership of 120, meets regularly and maintains a strong presence in the community through its organisation of Anzac Day, Remembrance Day and Long Tan Day, the maintenance of a memorabilia display at the RSL, as well as its support of Legacy, local Cadets, Bago Day Club and Wauchope High School.
The Sub-branch has had many Presidents and the current and immediate two past Presidents have served 26 years between them. These men are still very active Branch members.
The Anniversary dinner was organised by Major Mick Brownlow with a small team and was beautifully catered for by Wauchope RSL staff. The dinner was attended by Commonwealth, State and local representatives. Also attending were the Sub-branches four remaining Life Members. Life Membership was conferred on current President, Des Hancock, at the Armistice Day luncheon 11/11/18.