Interview with: Dudley Young
Date of Interview: 3 February 2000
Interviewer: Carol Kendall
Dudley moved to the Marcoola area in 1968. He talks about his involvement with the Progress Association, RSL, Legacy and his time as Scout Master at Nambour.
Images about scouting in the Sunshine Coast Libraries Catalogue.
Image: Scouting week at Civic Hall 1979.
Dudley Young oral history [MP3 29MB]
CK: Dudley, when did you first move up to the Marcoola area?
DY: ‘Bout 1968.
CK: And, had you already built a house, or
DY: I had a, I sold my property and I had to store the furniture. So, so I got a temporary shed built and that’s where it started.
DY: Then I got a war service home afterwards.
CK: Yeah, yeah. So what was in Marcoola in those days?
DY: The kiosk, the swimming pool and three shacks.
CK: Right. So.
DY: And then I, the caravan park started up later.
CK: Yeah, yeah. So you told me you’d been involved in a lot of these community organisations down there. Which one was the first one that you would’ve joined?
DY: The first one was started by myself and Ted Humphries. We started the progress association about 10 members
CK: And why did you start that?
DY: Well, to help mow the, the drains, and things like that. And to get a telephone, get a postal service, and things like that.
CK: So you didn’t even have a telephone line down here.
DY: We didn’t have a telephone line, we didn’t have a postal service, and we didn’t have nothing.
CK: What about electricity?
DY: Didn’t have electricity even where I was.
CK: Right. So who did you have to lobby to get, to get those services?
DY: The wife did, did the lobbying. She went in to someone in the Lands Department in Brisbane because I transferred, I’d started working with the Post Office in Brisbane and I was doing a course down there and I didn’t have time to go. She, and she went in and saw the bloke, saying’ the sold the land to us under false pretences that we could develop it and he said we didn’t expect anyone to be building’ on it yet
CK: Oh right
DY: So, away we went
CK: So how successful were you in getting electricity and telephone in?
DY: Eventually they came good. When the builder built the shed for me he had to go down to the amenities block to cut all, to cut his timber.
CK: And was that very far away?
DY: Oh, about couple hundred yards.
DY Yeah, four hundred yards.
CK: Is that, was there power to the amenities?
DY: Yeah………run by the Council so we used the Council power to
DY: To cut whatever he had to cut and course there was no town water, there was no, no garbage, no nothing’.
CK: So what did you do about water?
DY: Well, I put a tank up for a start. It was, it rained every night so didn’t have to worry about water.
CK: So as the Progress Association was, you know, you said there were 10 members. Were they pretty active too in?
DY: Pretty good blokes. Good people. They didn’t want a lot or didn’t expect a lot, they expect a lot more now. If you work with the Council you, you eventually get it. Like a dripping’ door or dripping’ tap
CK: Right so that’s what you
DY: You wear ‘em out
CK: So as you got these services did the area tend to grow a little bit?
DY: Well it got held back until we put sewerage in, ‘til the Council put sewerage
CK: And when was that?
DY: ‘bout 1995 I think
CK: Oh really?
CK: So it was still a little place up until about then
DY: Well, it never went ahead until they put sewerage through, well naturally because it just doesn’t work. Even Coolum didn’t go ahead until they put sewerage through
CK: Right so what are the things that the Progress Association do?
DY: Well, we helped start the Lifesavers or we started the lifesavers and then got ‘em on their feet.
DY: And then they took over and then their on their own. We’ve always, well I’ve always supported them by going to their carnivals and things like that. That’s it.
CK: So whose idea was it for a Surf Life Saving Club then? Was it one of the Progress Association members?
DY: Every, well someone got drowned there I think if I, I can’t exactly remember that one.
DY: But it was one of my Scouts’ nephew, or something’ like that, was drowned in the swimming pool at the kiosk.
DY: And we reckoned there was a need for something’ like that
CK: So what did you do? Did you have to lobby to Council or did you
CK: Or did you raise funds yourselves?
DY: We raised some funds, and promotion in the paper and, said we’re going to form a Life Saver’s Club and away they went. I didn’t do a lot of that, Teddy Humphries did most of the work
DY: Cause I got sent I was in the Post Office
CK: So you left the area for a while
DY: Yeah. I left here for 5 years.
CK: Right. So when you came back, had the area changed very much?
DY: Well it had. There were the, all the pools still there, caravan park was still there, the Lifesavers had started in a little shed
CK: Oh Right
DY: You know, now they’ve turned it, it’s quite a big business now. I think it was quite good.
CK: So were most of your friend still there that you’d left before?
DY: Most of ‘em are gone now.
CK: But when you came back after the 5 years?
DY: Yeah. Oh there’s still a few that are still around that started off the Progress Association
CK: Did you hold any positions in the Progress Association?
DY: I think I was, I might’ve been the Founder, actually, President, I think
CK: Right. But that’s about all, is it?
DY: Yeah, that, that started, and then I had to move, and then when I came back I think I might have been Secondary for a while.
DY: ‘Cause of the, sort of the, disintegrated it. Some thing went wrong and they tried to concentrate on the, the area up near the airport. And the, the other people thought they’d got left in the lurch, and no one seemed to want to do anything for ‘em. And the fact I used to know I knew Dave Low, I knew Eddie De Vere, I knew Fred Murray, I knew
CK: So how did you know those gentlemen?
DY: Well, I was a Scout Master and they always wanted something’ done by the Scouts.
CK: Oh right. So this is when you were the Scout Master in Nambour?
DY: Yeah. Well see Dave Low always wanted the Scouts to help for functions and things like that.
CK: So what kind of functions did he want you to do?
DY: Oh, well, I dunno really. He used to get the Ladies Committee to cater and things like that for his, he had a job of inviting visiting Parliamentarian Delegations and he used to bring ‘em up [interrupted by ringing phone]. ‘Scuse me.
CK: So you’d met David Low while you were a Scout Master in Nambour and things so when you were in Marcoola you weren’t doing the Scouts anymore but your involvement with Dave,
CK: Dou you think helped the Progress Association?
DY: Well you knew who to go to see.
DY: And I don’t know that he was the Chairman then. I think it became Eddie De Vere
DY: I got tied up with Eddie De Ver. Well I knew Eddie De Vere through, he belonged to Kenilworth, and he was the Kenilworth Councillor
DY: And when he become Chairman he still used our Scouts, and then you knew who to go and see. And being’ in the RSL I used to go and organise Anzac Day and things like that.
CK: Yeah. So they were helpful….down there at Marcoola
DY: Oh yeah, where they could. As long as people be sensible I think
DY: We’d get something.
CK: So what about the Postal Service? Did you have to actually go?
DY: Well being in the Post Office I knew what the rules were
DY: And you had to have so many people so we got a Locked Mail Bag service to start with
CK: What’s a Locked Mail Bag Service?
DY: Well, they’d bag it up in the Post Office, send it down to some shop that’s responsible.
CK: Oh right
DY: And you’d collect the mail from there.
CK: Oh I see.
DY: And they had the kiosk was run by Teddy Humphries and his wife and she was prepared to look after it
CK: Oh yeah
DY: For the community
CK: Oh right
DY: They get no pay and she was prepared to do it and that’s the way it worked.
CK: So how many people do you think would be living down there when you first got your mail service?
DY: ‘Bout 10 couples.
CK: Oh yeah, right, right. And did it stay very long, as that kind of service, for a while?
DY: Well, well, while I was away but then when I come back it had there was a oh yeah it used to be for a while just I had, I went and got a box in Nambour for a while
DY: And you had to go to Nambour for your mail
CK: That was a fair drive just for your mail
DY: Oh well you’ve got Nambour and Maroochydore. So.
CK: So can you remember when you first got the actual mail delivered to your
DY: No I can’t remember when we first had the mail service but the Post Office should be able to tell you.when they first started there.
CK: So there is a Post Office now at Marcoola, is there?
DY: But they put a Post in at Mudjimba. But he didn’t like the job
CK: Oh right
DY: And we’ve never had one since. The closest Post Office is in Bli Bli, I think. They, there’s lots of Post Boxes now. They had to provide ‘em eventually when the people, well, they count the mail every twice a year sort out who uses the mailboxes
CK: So did you stay a member of the Progress Association all the time you lived there, down there.
DY: Yeah, All the time.
CK: So what other kind of things did you do as the years went on?
DY: Oh well, it became RSL, Legacy and Post Office and Lifesavers. I didn’t do Scouts but I still helped ‘em
CK: So what was the Progress Association’s next moves when they got the mail service in, water and electricity?
DY: Well, more telephone services
CK: Oh right
DY: we only had, we put the first telephone service from the kiosk to Finland Road... The developer provided the telephone cable and we put the line
CK: Oh right. So that was, that was a fair way away, wasn’t it?
DY: We, and the Telecom joined it up over at the bottom end of Finland Road. So we had a telephone for emergencies anyway.
CK: So there was only the one telephone was it?
DY: It was in the off, it was in the real estate office.
DY: But, after that everyone got one
DY: I was, I think I had a telephone service when I went out to ………. Yeah so I did have ‘because it was connected to Coolum exchange.
CK: Mmm. So what other kind of things would you have been doing in the last five years in the Progress Association?
DY: Well I haven’t been doing’ much now
DY: Everything seems to be going’ alright. We didn’t have to mow any more lawns or their doing’ some work on the dunes at the moment
CK: So you mentioned mowing lawns. Whose lawns were the mowing?
DY: No, the drains. Council didn’t have a big working party then and they sort of do it now. So it’s provided a job for someone else.
CK: Right, oh yeah, okay
DY: The Parks and Gardens look after it now
CK: Mmm, mmm.But originally the Progress Association used to
DY: We started, well no-one was doing’ it so and the drains were getting’ full of weeds
CK: Right, so you just
DY: So everyone bought their mower out the Sunday morning
CK: Oh right, yeah. So you what, had a bit of a barbecue afterwards or?
DY: Oh well, have a beer anyway.
CK: Yeah. But can you tell me about your involvement with the Surf Club?
DY: Well, I guess like everything else, someone’s got to start there and Teddy Humphries said that we’ve got to start something for the kids and the Progress Association decided that we would support a, a junior Life Savers Club
CK: Oh right
DY: And we got [cuckoo clock sounds] three or four blokes that would [cuckoo clock sounds] young people used to come over weekend and a couple of butchers boys from I don’t remember their names but they came over from Toowoomba every weekend it was and we arranged for them to get training up at Coolum so they trained and by the time they were trained I went out to Winton so they and then the Lifesavers went from there. And at the moment they’ve got quite a good Life Savers Club
CK: Are you still involved with the Surf Lifesaving Club?
DY: Not really. I’m only a well I I’ve left there I won’t be involved. I used to help, go and help with their carnivals and things like that
CK: Oh right, yeah. So what would you do?
DY: Oh go and park cars and course you’ve got a carnival you’ve got thousand cars. And no space to put thousand cars at the Marcoola I tell ya.
CK: Oh right, yeah
DY: Few things like that. Help get the boats onto the beach and
DY: And you know might have to work in the bar sometimes
CK: Mhmm. Now you’ve also mentioned your involvement with the RSL
CK: Which branch of the RSL would that be?
DY: Well, I’ve been in involved with the RSL since 1952 but I started off in Griffith then I come to Queensland and I’ve been involved up here ever since When I went out to Winton I was the sec, Treasurer out there I think and I come back in here and I Vice President at Coolum
DY: Then Mudjimba started an RSL and I helped ‘em start. I was the zone President of the RSL of the Sunshine Coast
CK: Is there a lot involved in setting up a new RSL Club?
DY: Well there’s a little bit involved but you’ve just got to find out if there’s enough people in who’ll do it
CK: So did, was there a specific number of members you had to have to start one?
DY: Start 10, 10 members
DY: And start one
CK: Yeah, okay, so that’s what happened to get the Mudjimba one up and running
DY: Started Mudjimba, then we started Kawana. Now they’re talkin’ about starting one out here. But I’ll give it a miss
CK: So the Mudjimba one, was that, was that hard work?
DY: Yeah, was hard work.
CK: Yeah. So can you tell us some of the things you really had to do and
DY: Well, we had to get some land for a start off.
DY: Joe [Bejong] was the bloke that organised getting the land Eddie De Vere helped us get the land
DY: Got a bit of crown land I think it is, they call it.
DY: And we got a, quite a nice bloke of ground down there Then we had to get some money to build it. We wrung money from various places State branch give us some and South East District give us some we earned some
CK: Yeah. So how much do you thin you needed to start a building?
DY: Well nowadays it’ll cost you a million dollars maybe but
CK: Back then
DY: Oh, I ‘spose we had to have about fifty thousand
CK: Right. And what year was this? Can you remember?
CK: Right, yeah. So, so you raised a fair bit of money and you’ve all got to a building to be built did you
DY: We used as much local labour as possible, as most volunteer labour as possible it’s still being’ built wether it’ll ever get finished I don’t know. But it’s progressing’
CK: So the membership increase gradually did it over time?
DY: Yeah well see they’ve run out of old people or like my category but we’re getting’, we hope now to get a few young ex-army blokes and army, navy blokes and things like that to come to join later than us oh and with Timor we could get a few more now
CK: Right. But do you have just social members
CK: at Mudjimba
DY: Social members as well
CK: So you were still involved with it before you moved out here in Sippy Downs
DY: Yeah, yeah.
CK: And what would the membership be have been then?
DY: It was sixty seven I think members
DY: And seven hundred so social members
CK: So, so, who runs it then, when you’ve only got sort of sixty seven members?
DY: Oh well the members run it and that
CK: The social members are they allowed to help run it or not?
DY: Well, they can help but they don’t get too much say.
CK: Right, yeah. So with only sixty seven members do they, do they find it difficult to
DY: Oh yeah. They have a hard job sometimes
DY: Like everyone’s getting’ older and they
CK: What would the youngest one be? About sixty seven.
DY: Yeah, well he’d be oh no he’d thirty I suppose
CK: Oh well yeah
DY: But there’s not many of them.
CK: No, no so
DY: Most of us are over seventy five.
DY: There’s a few going on sixty, sixty-five bracket. Young blokes now
CK: So what’s the difference between a member and a social member?
DY: A member is someone who’s been an ex-serviceman and served in the forces.
CK: Oh right
CK: I see yeah
DY: At the moment there’ve gone to make it the policemen and ambulance officers and that can join but I don’t think that will happen because it’s not recognised.
CK: So is that a bit of a worry for Mudjimba Club? Because
DY: Well probably is a worry but the it’s just gonna they’ve gotta wear it They got to quite frankly I don’t know what will happen to the RSL in seventy-seven, seventy-eight another two three years there won’t be many younger than me around
CK: Yeah. But they haven’t really addressed those concerns yet?
DY: I don’t think they intend to address it they just hope it hoping’ someone else will find hope they don’t have a war that’s all
CK: Yes, yeah. So what kind of things does the RSL do for the community Dudley? Anything or did it do much for that community where you lived?
DY: DY Well we entertain twice a year we entertain Veteran’s from the various veteran’s homes probably qualify myself shortly
CK: Did they come to the RSL themselves in a bus or something?
DY: They …the buses from five homes I think they are. Sunnybank
CK: So some of them are in Brisbane around
CK: the place
DY: Caboolture, Caloundra and another one at Kenmore.
CK: Oh yeah.
DY: They all come down all come out
DY: We have about a hundred there
DY: And they have dinner or have morning tea dinner
DY: and go home
CK: Oh Right
DY: And we brought a whole, we’ve had someone that comes provides music for ‘em
DY: And, at no expense to them
CK: What about the local community though? Does the RSL get involved in the local community/
DY: Oh yeah we support everything in the community
CK: Like what?
DY: Like Scouts youth sport things like that
CK: Oh Right, yes Tell me about the youth sport? Do you sponsored youngsters or how does that work?
DY: Well we just support them by suggestin’ to our members that they should support ‘em.
CK: In what way?
DY: Go along and support ‘em
DY: Vocally. Oh well just
CK: Oh Right
DY: You know we helped them get a bit of ground then the Council give ‘em another, a big bit of ground it all helps I suppose if you take time takes well it’s taken thirty years now so I don’t know
CK: So is this the Mudjimba Sports Ground we’re talking about
DY: Yeah, Yeah
DY: That started off in [Nojoule Road] down there on a part on an empty bit of ground
CK: What did it start off as? Soccer or Rugby?
DY: Soccer Club
CK: Oh yes
DY: Well soccer had nowhere to go for kids anyway and that’s always been a bit of a problem the developers have never been made to put in any big bit of ground so it could be team sports played
DY: Never, not in this area
CK: So that’s one of the reasons
DY: That’s one thing that they should do
CK: That you’ve, that you pushed for
CK: But it took a long time
CK: To get it
CK: So, so what other things would the RSL have done then?
DY: Oh like generally keep the community advised I suppose go to, oh well I’ve been going to the schools for 10 years now
CK: The local school?
DY: Yeah teach kids or explain to kids bout various things
CK: Like what?
DY: ‘Bout different countries and different peoples why with them in the war and why we didn’t, shouldn’t have been there things like that
CK: In your capacity as an RSL member
CK: Right, right yeah. So how often would you do that?
DY: Oh it started in 197, 1995 really. That was the anniversary of the, the fiftieth anniversary of the war
DY: And I spent couple of days down at the school
CK: Mudjimba School or
DY: Well, Pacific Paradise
CK: Oh Right, yeah
DY: And then I went to a couple of other schools and we had a big party in Nambour Showgrounds
CK: Hmmm, what was that party for?
DY: Well for the kids. All the schools came and they all performed
CK: Oh so what did they
DY: It was magnificent
CK: perform for
CK: What kind of things did they perform?
DY: Well they did what they, they chose what they do
CK: Oh yeah
DY: They Coolum came and played they brought their band
DY: Pacific Paradise did it, yeah. But they all, they came a busload came from Kenilworth They all come in and the kids had a good time
CK: So do you find when you go to the schools the children listen and their quite receptive to what you’ve got to tell them?
DY: I think so if you you’ve got to come down to their level
DY: And not talk about things that they shouldn’t know anyway
DY: You don’t want to scare the daylights out of them
DY: And I’ve always had a very pleasant thing to talk about anyway
DY: So just talk generally and what we’ve been doing is the RSL’s been helping to get each school have its own little memorial so they can have a memorial service. If they you know someone gets hurt at school or gets killed they can have a little area they can go and have a
CK: Oh right
DY: We sort of sponsor ‘em so that it’s the centrepiece but they can have Anzac Day or Remembrance Day service, you know and things like that at the school
CK: So whose idea was that? Did that come from Head Office or
DY: No Well
CK: You’re not sure
DY: I don’t know where it came from but it’s gradually come around anyway and now their I’ve gotta get I went to two last year at Caloundra and there’s two more in Caloundra they’re gonna get done this year in April apparently that the school dedicates an area where the kids can have a quiet
DY: service or they can ask a minister to come or someone
CK: Oh right
DY: If they’ve got a problem
DY: And I think that’s quite good
CK: Yeah that’s a great idea, isn’t it/
DY: And if they want a well at Pacific Paradise the kids have they virtually run Anzac Day
CK: Oh, do they?
DY: There own well with a bit of guidance from Headmaster
DY: And they give the speeches and the talks and everything like that
CK: So how do you feel about that? You’re quite
DY: I think it’s
DY: Quite good
DY: Rather than they do it to me
CK: Now you also mentioned Legacy Dudley. Can you are you a member of Legacy did you say?
DY: I’ve been a member of Legacy for twenty years or yeah or close to twenty
CK: Is Legacy involved in, in Marcoola Mudjimba area at all?
DY: Well Legacy’s involved in Australia wide
DY: It’s a, it’s the only organisation in the world that’s entirely voluntary
DY: There’s nothing
CK: Can you explain a little bit about Legacy for us?
DY: Well Legacy we go to our charter is to look out the widows. It started in 1916 by couple of people saying that don’t worry we’ll see your kids go to school and if anything happens to you and that’s where it started
CK: So that was an outcome of the First World War
DY: Yeah and it’s that’s been ever since
DY: And they’ve been just when the Black Hawk helicopter happened there was I think six children involved in that of the you know
DY: And Legacy said don’t worry, we we’ll look after ‘em
CK: Right. So have you held any positions in Legacy?
DY: Oh everyone takes their turn, we all take a turn and we all do a job.
CK: So which branch do you belong to? Have you got a local one or
DY: Well the Sunshine Coast where I’m going this afternoon. We’re going
CK: So where’s their office?
DY: Maroochydore. They’ve got an office there. We’ve got I ‘suppose seventy legatee sin the area and we’ve got a thou, oh thirteen hundred widows to look after
CK: So what kind of things do you do for them?
DY: If they have a problem, with their house, or things like that
CK: Yeah, like handyman stuff or
DY: Well handyman stuff or you got to get a builder in make sure that their, that the builder’s gonna do it right. You might have to get a loan for ‘em or well or organise a loan for ‘em through a bank or
DY: If they can’t get it from a bank we’ll get, we’ve got funds in Brisbane
CK: Oh right, yeah, okay. And so do you have any social outings for them
DY: Yeah. We have on a month down Mudjimba and several other clubs do too
DY: Where they’re called Laurel Clubs and they meet every month
DY: We meet every month to
CK: So is the Legacy mostly men
DY: Oh well it can be women now because there’s women in the services
CK: Right, yeah
DY: So I mean we have a lady who’s nine, a Ladies Day all the ladies get taken out to dinner
DY: And things like that
CK: How’s Legacy funded then?
DY: We have a Legacy Day a Legacy badge week in September every year where we raise I suppose we raise fifty or sixty thousand dollars
CK: Is that just on the Coast or is that Australia
DY: In this area
CK: In this area alone, right yeah
DY: Which is enough nearly to for us to survive without any we have to get help sometimes from Brisbane
CK: Right, yeah
DY: And we, they, they control all the money so that’s the way it goes. Legacy’s something that’s just come that’s gotta happen or still. I don’t just know where I’m gonna fit in now I’ll find out today.
CK: So you think you might have a new role do you or you
DY: Well I
CK: Or you keep in this area or something
DY: Oh well I don’t know there’s new people in this area but just what I’m gonna do I don’t know because time’s limited got other problems so
CK: Right yeah. So you, you really enjoy all these community
DY: Oh yeah, I like doing it
CK: Do you find it, it tiring or now that you’re getting older?
DY: Yep getting too tired and too cranky
CK: So do you think you might have to give some of them away?
DY: Yeah well Legacy will probably be the last one I’ll give away
CK: Right, yeah. So were you actually in the services yourself
DY: Yeah, I was in the Navy for thirteen years
CK: Oh, were you, right, okay, yeah
CK: Just about finished