Looking back this week

Looking back 10 years to 2012: St Michael's student Kitty was among those excited to celebrate the school's 50th anniversary.

30 years to 1992

Former long serving Cranbourne Shire councilor Col Utber was honoured with the official opening by Shire President Pat Marshall of the Col Utber Swamp Towers Reserve. In his address to the more than 100 people who gathered for the ceremony, Cr Marshall referred to the outstanding record of service to the community of Kooweerup and the shire over a period spanning 34 years. “Col has fulfilled an integral role in nurturing community spirit, particularly in the townships of Kooweerup and Lang Lang,” he said. “Personal values of honesty, commonsense and hard work have served him well through both good and tough times of an extraordinary life.” Col Utber Swamp Tower Reserve was constructed as part of Victoria’s 150th anniversary celebrations and is a popular stopover point for tourists on the South Gippsland Highway.

20 years to 2002

Pakenham Scout Group is riding a wave of popularity, having been forced to create a waiting list for the first time in its 77-year history. Pakenham is the largest Scout group in the area, with 65 youth members, 11 leaders and another 12 potential members on the waiting list. Group leader Paul Buck welcomed the record membership but was unsure why it came so suddenly. “Kids have always loved Scouts, but I don’t know why so many people want to join all of a sudden,” he said. “I guess some of the rise in membership can be attributed to Pakenham’s growing population but that can’t be the only answer.” District commissioner David Brown suggested the popularity could be attributed to the fact the Scouting movement had moved with the times.

10 years to 2012

St Michael’s School in Berwick celebrated its 50th anniversary. Opening in 1962, St Michael’s was the first Catholic school in the district, serving families from across Berwick, Lyndhurst, Cranbourne, Narre Warren and Beaconsfield. It began as a single hall and has grown to a current enrolment of 370. To mark the milestone, a Mass was held on 26 June at the St Michael’s Parish Church, with many past students, staff and families attending. Grade 6 students got an insight into the school’s history from one of the first teachers, Win Dortmans (or Miss Winifred McLinden as she was then).