Ed­u­ca­tor, farmer in hall of fame

Great Southern Herald - - News - Bob Gar­nant

Agri­cul­tural Hall of Fame 2018 in­ductees UWA emer­i­tus pro­fes­sor Alan Rob­son AO and the late Eric Far­leigh, a for­mer Boyup Brook pi­o­neer­ing farmer, were ac­knowl­edged for their con­tri­bu­tion to agri­cul­ture at last week’s Royal Agri­cul­tural So­ci­ety of WA’s cer­e­mo­nial lun­cheon.

The two agri­cul­tural gi­ants will be im­mor­talised through por­trait work, which will be un­veiled next year at Clare­mont Show­ground’s David But­tfield House, where 61 pre­vi­ous RASWA AHF in­ductees have been dis­played.

The un­veil­ing of the 2017 in­ductee, Q-Lamb cre­ator Peter Tre­fort, of Nar­ro­gin, was a highly an­tic­i­pated event of the day.

RASWA pres­i­dent Paul Carter wel­comed the many dis­tin­guished guests in­clud­ing WA Gov­er­nor Kerry San­der­son.

He said since the 1999 in­cep­tion of the Wes­farm­ers-spon­sored AHF, 36 in­ductees were from WA, six were from the East­ern States and 19 had over­seas origins.

Pro­fes­sor Rob­son said he was de­lighted to join the ranks of many peo­ple he had known and re­garded. An in­ter­na­tion­ally recog­nised agri­cul­tural sci­en­tist, Pro­fes­sor Rob­son’s re­search in­ter­ests in­clude the min­eral nu­tri­tion of plants and soil fer­til­ity.

Eric Far­leigh (1898 to 1988), a Hawkes­bury Agri­cul­tural Col­lege grad­u­ate, took up 920ha in Boyup Brook which was deemed un­suit­able for sol­dier re­set­tle­ment by the Repa­tri­a­tion Board in 1924.

His in­tu­itive­ness in com­bin­ing lime with ba­sic phos­phate to fer­tilise soil, and how sub­ter­ranean clovers worked towards soil fer­til­ity were his soil im­prov­ing lega­cies.

Pic­ture: Bob Gar­nant

Roy­alA­gri­cul­tural So­ci­ety of WA 2017 Hall of Fame in­ductee Peter Tre­fort and artist Feli­cia Lowe at the un­veil­ing cer­e­mony at the Clare­mont Showgrounds' David But­tfield House.

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