Way back when, Wednesdays

South Australia’s local royalty

Would you like to be crowned Miss Home Laundry? Is this ultimate glorification of the mid-century domestic goddess or is it a sad reflection on the role of housewives in this era? It’s neither! On the cover of the edition dated 14 July 1971 The North-East Leader, a Messenger Newspaper recognised pretty Elizabeth Chapman’s impressive fundraising efforts. Representing Radio Rentals store at Tea Tree Plaza, her work assisted charities in South Australia, through a partnership between the appliance retailer and Telethon SA.

Miss Home Laundry

It appears that the title of Charity Queen, Miss Home Laundry was related to a sales promotion (probably for white goods), given the nature of Radio Rentals’ business.
Telethon SA is a non-profit organisation that endorses and supports ethical fundraising and it has been a leading sponsor of South Australian charities since 1960. Through support provided by South Australian businesses, Telethon assists charities with advertising and promotion and offers them opportunities to participate in various fully managed fundraising projects and events (https://www.telethon.com.au).

Telethon-SA-logo

During the 1960s and 1970s Telethon SA was renowned for holding fundraising appeals which were televised from the studios of NWS Channel Nine (hence the name Telethon). These annual appeal shows lasted several hours and they featured celebrities and television personalities. These entertainers performed for free and they asked viewers to donate money, by telephoning a number which appeared on the screen. The Telethon Appeal also showed people how their donations had helped others in the community.

1975 Telethon SA appeal 1975 Dean Davis, Humphrey Bear and Helen Woods

1975 Telethon SA Appeal with Helen Woods, Humphrey Bear and Dean Davis.  Photo:  http://www.adelaidenow.com.au

Telethon SA ran the high profile beauty pageant, the Miss Telethon Quest. In the newspaper photo above, Miss Sue Dolman, who was named Miss Telethon in 1971, has presented Elizabeth Chapman with her winner’s sash. The Miss Telethon Quest was not just about looks. The young women who entered would compete to raise funds. The entrant who raised the most money would be crowned as a charity queen; she did not have to win the overall competition. The winner of Miss Telethon would be expected to be a dedicated and hardworking ambassador for her organisation. Winning Miss Telethon could lead to other opportunities, such as in the entertainment industry or in public relations. Telethon also conducted charity auctions and the House of Hope competition.

Nowadays you probably would have heard of Telethon SA in relation to the annual Home & Land Lottery. Telethon SA describe the Lottery as the cornerstone of its fundraising activities as it has raised more than $28 million for SA charities since its inception in 1977 (http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-03-30/telethon-sa-rescued-after-closure-fears/8401562).

Humphrey Bear and builders at the 1984 Fairmont Pacific Telethon House in Redwood Park

Humphrey Bear and the builders at the 1984 Fairmont Pacific Telethon house in Redward Park. Photo:  http://www.adelaidenow.com.au

In February 2017 Telethon SA announced that it may have to close as it could no longer afford to hold the Home & Land Lottery in the current economic climate. The Lottery relied on the donation of a new house and land package by the residential building industry. The State Government land agency Renewal SA had withdrawn its offer of vacant land. So Telethon SA would have been forced to pay for an allotment.

Fortunately for the charities of South Australia, Renewal SA reversed its decision and made the commitment to donate a block of land for the Home & Land Lottery for a period of three years. Rivergum Homes also pledged its support of a house on the land for each of those three years, in conjunction with its South Australian residential building partners. The board of Telethon SA accepted the offers of free houses and land. The Telethon SA Rivergum Home and Land Lottery 2017 raised $1,027,290. Telethon SA continues its good work for our state.

(http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-03-30/telethon-sa-rescued-after-closure-fears/8401562)

(https://www.news.com.au/national/south-australia/telethon-sa-saved-from-closure-after-surge-of-public-support/news-story/9c56f055175e1f0b4c869cc3ab8c5e3a)

Home and Land lottery

Advertisement for the The Telethon SA Rivergum Home and Land Lottery in 2017 Photo:  www.grow.org.au

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Way back when, Wednesdays

The gangster of groceries

At one time, almost everybody could say that they had a local Tom the Cheap grocer. On page 7 of the edition dated 11 January, 1967 the North East Leader a Messenger Newspaper reported on grocery specials on sale at the Modbury Tom the Cheap store on the corner of Grand Junction and North East Roads (now the site of Barnacle Bills and IGA).

 

Tom the Cheap advertisement 1967

Note the late opening of Tom the Cheap, Modbury on Friday until 9pm! Usually only delicatessans were open in the evenings in Adelaide during the 1960s. Adelaide had sporadic late night trading before WWII on Fridays (even on Saturdays in the 1920s). Late night shopping was stopped during war time. Trading commenced on Thursday nights in suburban shops and Friday nights in the City in 1977.

 

There really was a ‘Tom’. Thomas Wardle opened his first discount grocery store in North Perth in the 1950s. At this time, Australians mainly shopped at grocery stores which offered over the counter service. There were some ‘Cash and Carry’ stores which relied on self-service but supermarkets were a novelty. On a trip to Sweden with his wife, Wardle was influenced by the European model of shopping where customers could walk down aisles, choosing their purchases (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thomas_Wardle).

During the 1950s, it was common practice for manufacturers to fix a resale price for their goods. Retailers then resold the goods to consumers for a healthy profit margin. Today, the Competition and Consumer Act (which replaced the Trade Practices Act of 1974) forbids resale price maintenance. Tom Wardle’s main selling point was that he claimed to only mark up his stock by ten percent, whereas the other supermarket retailers usually charged twenty five to thirty percent when goods were not ‘on special’. Tom the Cheap did not sell products below cost but naturally customers loved the discounts.

In a conservative era, manufacturers and wholesalers were outraged by Wardle’s approach and some refused to supply him with goods. So Wardle took to importing merchandise directly and he established relationships with suppliers interstate to make his purchases. Tom the Cheap became a highly profitable business enterprise in WA and by 1959 fifteen stores were in operation. In 1962 Tom Wardle expanded his chain of stores into South Australia. He eventually established more than 200 stores in four states.

 

Tom-the-Cheap sign

 It was easy to spot a Tom the Cheap supermarket when you saw this road sign.  Photo:  https://australianfoodtimeline.com.au/tom-the-cheap/

 

Tom Wardle cleverly exploited his notoriety with suppliers and other retailers. Australians love a rebel. Wardle advertised his Tom character as a convict in prison garb, ‘the bad boy’ of grocery shopping who was “Australia’s greatest price-cutter”. Wardle also courted publicity. He openly criticised his competitors, accusing them of greed and fleecing the public. It is reported that when Wardle opened one of his stores he employed the services of marching girls, a jazz band, and a belly dancer. Prominent footballers and a radio announcer also made an appearance.
(https://australianfoodtimeline.com.au/tom-the-cheap/)

Australia's greatest price cutter

Tom Wardle was probably guilty of some crookery, as he is reputed to have paid low wages to his mainly female staff. His ‘no frills’ approach to shopping was not limited to pricing. Wardle used cheap advertising and he bought up or rented run down, disused buildings (such as this old theatre on  Anzac Highway at Goodwood pictured below) to set up shop, as they were cheap to fit out (https://australianfoodtimeline.com.au/tom-the-cheap/).

 

 

It should be acknowledged that while Tom Wardle became incredibly wealthy, he was also a philanthropist who made sizeable donations to schools, hospitals, sporting bodies, womens’ organisations and the Arts. Tom Wardle even bought his own island (where he later retired) when the West Australian Government sold Dirk Hartog Island in 1968, which is situated near Shark Bay. Tom Wardle was elected Mayor of Perth in 1967. During his life, he was aslo honoured with many important appointments in the service of the public (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thomas_Wardle).

 

Supertom.jpg

Supertom, , The Leader Messenger, page 28, 6 January 1982

 

In the 1980s the character of Tom briefly reinvented himself as a superhero who fought against high grocery prices. These advertisements were probably influenced by the popularity of the Superman movie series, starring Christopher Reeve. ‘Supertom’, the caped crusader appeared on television commercials accompanied by a robotic companion, which resembled a round vacuum cleaner with metallic arms. If you can remember the name of Tom’s sidekick, or would like to share your memories of Tom the Cheap, please let us know!

Tom Wardle had been interested in investing in property development since the 1960s. In 1972 he purchased a majority share in Westhaven Securities Limited, a property investment company. Unfortunately in 1977 the company defaulted on a substantial loan used to finance property purchases which triggered the collapse of The Tom the Cheap family companies. The supermarkets went into receivership in mid-1978 and they were forced to close (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thomas_Wardle). Tom Wardle died in 1997.
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My two best friends: Mekah and Lara

After a rough start to high school in 2016, Year 10 work experience student Jessica sought out a new puppy to bring some happiness into her life. It was love at first sight when she met German Shepherd puppy Mekah. Below, Jessica tells the story of how they met … 

It’s interesting how some people say diamonds are a girl’s best friend – in my case, my dogs are my best friends.

A couple of years ago, I was in Year 8, my first year of high school. I had a rough start trying to find my feet and didn’t know where to go.

One day I came home exhausted and complained to mum and dad I wanted a puppy. Mum and dad were considering it, but had their doubts at the same time. I already had a dog named Zara, a German shepherd, the most beautiful and athletic dog.

Still, I kept asking and my parents ended up looking at German Shepherd puppies online. They chose a breeder who looked professional and knew what she was talking about, so we called her up and arranged a time to see the puppies the next day. I was filled with joy!

The next day we drove all the way down to Penfield to look at the puppies. When we got there, there were at least 40 German Shepherds barking at us as we waited to get let into the yard.

Finally, the gates opened and we walked into the puppies’ cages. I got to choose which puppy I wanted and I chose the girl – she was so tiny, as small as my two hands put together.

Mekah

The lovely Mekah, as she looked when we first laid eyes on her at the breeder’s place

We put a deposit down but we couldn’t take her home yet because she still needed some needles and also had to be vaccinated.

I went home and started to choose names. I decided on the name Mekah – yes it’s a different way to spell it from Meeka, the standard way it is spelt, but I liked it because it was different.

A week later we went and picked Mekah up and took her home. She fell asleep straight away. A few days later we took her to the vet because her back legs were a bit wobbly and she kept falling over.

Mekah as a puppy

A picture of Mekah one week after we took her home

Mekah had her X-rays done and it turned out she had severe hip dysplasia in both of her hips. We contacted the breeder, who was shocked. She said none of the dogs she had bred had ever had hip dysplasia before. The breeder refunded our money and said she was going to take Mekah and put her down. But we couldn’t let that happen to Mekah – she was only a puppy! So we kept her. We have looked after her ever since and still to this day, Mekah is a fun and adventurous dog who loves to play and EAT!!!

We still had Zara at the time we got Mekah and they both got along so well, until one night Zara had several seizures and had to be put down. Zara was only two years old when she died on the 11th of July 2017.

It was sad and my family didn’t know how to move on without Zara, because she was so close to us and was the best dog. My brother wanted another dog, so once again we searched for a puppy online, this time for a Siberian husky. One evening he came in and said ‘I’ve found a dog and I’m buying her.’

She was the cutest puppy I have ever seen: a Siberian Husky with long and fluffy white fur and big bright blue eyes.

My brother made a booking as soon as he could to go and see the puppy, because so many people were interested in her and wanted to buy her.

I went with my brother and my mum and dad to meet the dog and the breeders, who were so nice and friendly.

A few days later we collected the dog and named her Lara. We chose Lara because it rhymed with Zara, the name of our previous dog.

Lara

My gorgeous puppy Lara, who turned one earlier in the year

Both Mekah and Lara love playing and sleeping a lot, when they are not eating…..

Mekah

Lara and Mekah, chilling at home

Mekah is currently two and a half years old.

Mekah 2

Mekah is now two and a half years old and is a big sook

Lara has only just turned one.

Both Lara and Mekah have had big impacts in our family’s lives. They bring a lot of happiness and smiles to my family and that’s why we love them the most.

Did you know…about Frankenstein?

wp_20180626_14_25_24_proDid you know that this year, 2018 marks the 200th anniversary of the publication of the novel Frankenstein?

Written by Mary Shelley and published when she was just 20 years old, the novel grew out of a writing challenge proposed by Lord Byron when Mary and her future husband Percy Shelley were staying with him at Villa Diodati on Lake Geneva. This challenge would also produce the first modern vampire story (The Vampyre by John Polidori, published in 1819). Encouraged by Percy, Mary expanded her short story into a full novel, which was published as Frankenstein; or, The Modern Prometheus in 1818 with a first print run of just 500 copies. Curiously, it was published annonymously and Shelley’s name would not appear on the novel until its 1823 printing.

Regarded as one of the break out Gothic Horror novels and one of the first Science Fiction stories, the book has been adapted to both stage and screen numerous times, including the 1931 Frankenstein (and its two sequels, The Bride of Frankenstein and Son of Frankenstein) staring Boris Karloff as the monster and a series of films by British studio Hammer Films which stared Peter Cushing as the infamous Doctor Frankenstein.

A common mistake is the belief that the name Frankenstein refers to the creature itself, something perpetuated in some adaptions (for example: the the Japanese film Frankenstein Conquers the World and the animated Hotel Transylvania film series). In truth it is actually the name of the main character: Doctor Victor Frankenstein.

Why not celebrate the bicentenary of this classic by reading the novel or perhaps enjoying one of the many film adaptions or even read about the author and the books impact on literature.

THE MANDELA EFFECT

Year 10 work experience student Caitlin is a massive fan of supernatural phenomena and the unknown. While watching a YouTube video on conspiracy theories, Caitlin stumbled onto the ‘Mandela effect’. She writes more about the topic for us below:


Have you ever been convinced something is set a particular way but it turns out you were completely wrong? Chances are you have. This is referred to as false memory or “The Mandela Effect.” The Mandela effect is a psychological phenomenon and it is a collective of misremembered facts or events. Some believe it is just our mind weaving a lie but others speculate this is evidence you have experienced events from a different reality.

Don’t worry though, you are not alone. Many people experience similar Mandela effects. The human memory is a complex thing and although we do know a lot about it, there are still some holes in our research. These past events that people remember feel so real and vivid, most refuse to believe the evidence. Various theories have been speculated and proposed – some are sensible but others still have many confused.

If you are still confused let me give you an example:

In the popular and iconic movie Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope (which if you haven’t seen it, were you raised under a rock?) Luke finds out Darth Vader is his father. Darth Vader says to him, “Luke, I am your father.” Well at least that’s what most of us remember. In fact he actually says “No, I am your father.” If you remembered it correctly, well done, but if you believe it to be the other way around you’re in the same boat with thousands of other people. It gets even more confusing because there is various evidence complementing both sides of the story.

The Mandela Effect began in 2010 when American paranormal enthusiast, Fiona Broome, posted on her website about Nelson Mandela. She claimed she remembered seeing news coverage of Nelson Mandela’s death in late 1991 in a South African prison. It wasn’t just something small and hazy – Broome clearly remembered news clips of his funeral, the mourning in South Africa, rioting in cities, and the heartfelt speech by his widow.You may be thinking she’s crazy, due to the fact Nelson Mandela died in 2013.

 

Fiona Broome.jpg

Fiona Broome                                                 Image source:     https://cynthiasuelarson.wordpress.com/2015/08/31/berenstain-bears-mandela-effect-thanksgiving-thursday/

When she heard the official news in 2013, Broome believed she had just misunderstood the previous information but when she attended Dragon Con she learnt from a member of security there were a number of people at the event who also remembered that Nelson Mandela died in prison.

Nelson Mandela

But did he really die in 2013?                                                                                                                                   Image source: https://www.rte.ie/news/2013/1205/491152-nelson-mandela/


This notion spiralled and Broome found thousands of people who were in the same boat as her. When she started posting about it online, she got hundreds of response messages. One person who remembered Nelson Mandela dying in prison was with their mum and when hearing of his death in 2013, both were confused. Both remembered the Oprah show dedicated to Mandela and a specific concert that was live and shown on multiple channels in memory of Nelson Mandela. There is even proof of a Time magazine article stating he died in 1991, 22 years before his reported 2013 death. Many remember discussing Nelson Mandela’s death with family and friends and one even had a notebook where they documented his death prior to 2013.

Here’s the newspaper ‘proof’

Mandela effect - proof

Image source: https://in5d.com/the-mandela-effect-proof-that-negative-timelines-are-collapsing/

 

Maybe you’re skeptical. But if you are someone who remembers Nelson Mandela’s death prior to 2013, then go to this link to discuss with others:

http://mandelaeffect.com/nelson-mandela-died-in-prison/#comment-4891

If you still are completely turned away by this, then let me give you even more evidence:

Remember the ever-so-popular line from Disney’s rendition of Snow White by the Brothers Grimm. The line goes “Mirror, Mirror on the wall, who’s the fairest of them all?” You would think this line would be easy to remember, seeing as IMDb actually describes this film as “by far most memorable full-length animated feature from the Disney Studios.” What if I told you the Queen never says ‘mirror, mirror’ but instead says ‘magic mirror’. In earlier written copies of Snow White, each has the stated line “mirror, mirror”. Snow White was written around 100 years prior to the film and each rendition uses “mirror, mirror”. Of course a logical explanation is that Disney just changed the wording – but why are there so many people who vividly remember the film version saying “mirror, mirror”? You can even see the line being used in pop culture references, appearing in TV shows, on t-shirts and even a movie having it as its title.

I could go on and on about this topic with hundreds of other Mandela Effect examples but I’ll leave you to explore and make your own judgements.

Way back when, Wednesdays

Suit up Seventies style

Cord suit

At first glance you might think that the clever lady in the photograph has recycled some bathmats and sewn herself a tailored outfit. This is certainly not the case. In the edition dated 14 July 1971, the North East Leader tells us that Mrs June Cooper is in fact, modelling a stylish suit made from jumbo cord. This photograph on page 19 was taken to promote the Witchery Boutique at Tea Tree Plaza. According to the North East Leader, it was a modish outfit that women would have wanted to wear in the early 1970s.

Corduroy fabric has been used in the manufacture of workwear since the 18th century in Britain and Europe. During the 20th century, factories in many other countries started produced clothing made from corduroy, often for the working classes. In the 1970s garments made from corduroy became incredibly popular. They were easy to launder, soft and warm in winter and affordable. Corduroy garments could also be dressed up or down. Both men and women could wear a corduroy suit to the office or wear the jacket or pants separately on weekends.

Corduroy jeans, jackets and skirts are still worn today. In the cooler weather, corduroy always seems to be a popular choice for jeans.

 

corduroy-fall-2017-2

Corduroy on the catwalk in 2017.  Image:  http://corduroy.in/corduroy-news/

 

If you are not familiar with corduroy, it is a durable cotton or cotton blend cloth, which is basically a ridged form of velvet. Corduroy comes in a multitude of colours and it can be plain or printed. Multiple cords are woven into the base fabric to form ridges or wales, which lie parallel to each other in clear lines. Sometimes you can see channels where the bare fabric between the cords is visible. Corduroy fabric with a standard or wide wale (jumbo cord) is used to upholster furniture, such as sofas, or it is made into trousers. Fabric with medium (midwale) narrow, and fine wale (such as pinwale or pincord) is used in the manufacture in garments worn above the waist. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Corduroy (http://www.fashionencyclopedia.com/fashion_costume_culture/Modern-World-Part-II-1961-1979/Corduroy.html).

 

Corduroy Fabric

Different wales of corduroy.  Image:  http://market-research-explore-report.blogspot.com/2018/02/world-corduroy-fabric-market-2018.html

 

The 1970s was revolutionary for women as it was the first time in history in which it was acceptable for women to wear what they wanted. Asian women had worn pants under tunics for many years. Now western women seemed to prefer wearing pants to dresses and skirts (https://www.retrowaste.com/1970s/fashion-in-the-1970s/1970s-fashion-for-women-girls/). Women wore pantsuits to the city, and some could wear them to the office. A trendy or elegant pantsuit was just the thing to wear out to dinner. As the 1970s progressed, pants for both men and women became low rise and firmer on the hips. Legs widened out and were sometimes cuffed. Eventually, flares came into fashion (http://www.thepeoplehistory.com/1971fashions.html).

This issue of the North East Leader also featured an extensive sales promotion for the St. Agnes shopping centre. Take a look at this advertisement for Witchery which was printed on page 11 and the funky bohemian image that this brand was trying to sell. In the 1960s and 1970s Witchery opened retail outlets at many suburban locations such as at the St. Agnes and Ingle Farm shopping centres.

Witchery advertisement
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Way back when, Wednesdays

Book drought makes history

The Tea Tree Gully Library service has always been popular! As featured in a previous Way back when, Wednesdays post the official opening of a new public library made front page news in the North East Leader, a Messenger newspaper, on 5 March 1969. The Library, which operated out of a mobile bus, had moved its service into the building which was formerly the Modbury Primary School and headmaster’s cottage, now designated as 561 Montague Road, Modbury. On page 3 of the edition dated 9 April 1969, the North East Leader reported on a possible book shortage after only one month, as the new library service had proved so popular with local residents.

Library fines

As stated in the Messenger article above, since the new library had opened, memberships had soared to over 4000 and nearly 10,000 books were on loan. Unfortunately many of the Library’s avid readers were not particularly conscientious when it came to returning their items and the Library’s book stock had become depleted.  Members had also failed to return 1,600 books which had been issued to them on the old mobile library.  When you think about it, for a building of its size, the Montague Road library actually had quite a substantial book stock.

The Librarian in charge, Mr. W. Bustelli thought that introducing a system of fines would motivate library members to return books on time. We don’t have information about whether library fine were introduced in 1969. We would love to hear about your experiences if you remember using the library on Montague Road!

Fortunately, in 2018 the City of Tea Tree Gully Library has considerably more items available for loan than in 1969. The Library holds approximately 64,000 books for adults, 25000 for children and adolescents, 4,500 magazines and 17,000 audio visual materials (this includes DVDs, CDs and audiobooks). You can now also access audio and e-books and take advantage of approximately 4 million items through the SA Public Libraries One Card Network. In 2017 the Library lent out an average of 73,210 items per month.

 

Boca Chica bar

The old schoolhouse building at 561 Montague Road, Modbury is now the home of Sfera’s ‘Boca Chica’, a Spanish inspired concept restaurant and bar.

 
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