Lo­cal his­tory buff shares his pas­sion and knowl­edge

Gatton Star - - Life -

ac­cord­ing to the pri­mary in­dus­tries depart­ment, is the old­est com­mer­cial dairy in Aus­tralia and the bricks are from the Sil­ver­wood but­ter fac­tory that burnt down over 100 years ago.”

The land the Lock­yer Dis­trict High School rests on was once owned by Mr Davey and was where he shifted dry jersey cows.

“The gov­ern­ment re­sumed 20 acres of my pad­dock for the high school,” he said.

“That’s where I used to put my jersey cows and dry milk­ers.

“I used to own that and take the jersey cows up there.

“I used to have a pony to try and bring them up there and bring them home with a 1950s chev util­ity.

“I had to go to the po­lice to get a per­mit and they is­sued me a per­mit to shift the cat­tle – but I was not al­lowed to shift cat­tle dur­ing the Car­ni­val of Flow­ers weekend be­cause of the traf­fic on the road.”

Look­ing down on Lock­yer Creek, Mr Davey de­scribed how the iconic Daveys Bridge re­ceived its name and said it used to be a wooden struc­ture called Kullys Bridge.

Stand­ing proudly for a num­ber of years, the wooden bridge was no match for the flash flood in 1971 and was washed away by the force of the wa­ter.

“There was 28 feet of wa­ter in an hour-and-a-half and it took the bridge down­stream about a quar­ter of a mile,” Mr Davey said.

“I went in and asked them if they could re­name the bridge to Daveys Bridge.”

Mr Davey said he used to pick plums from a line of trees planted on the creek bank.

“When they built Daveys bridge, there was a sec­tion where they planted a line of plum trees. And I used to pick enough, on the way home from school, to make 12 pounds of jam,” he said.

Mr Davey re­mem­bered the se­quence of events fol­low­ing one of the town’s wettest years.

“1950 was the wettest year we’ve ever had,” he said.

“We had 50 inches, com­pared to 28 nor­mally. The Gat­ton Show was post­poned un­til af­ter the ex­hi­bi­tion be­cause it was too wet.”

Mr Davey said the birdlife that would nor­mally mi­grate north in au­tumn stayed, due to the wet con­di­tions.

One of Mr Davey’s great­est pas­sions in life is wood­work, with an ex­ten­sive list of hand­crafted pieces to his name.

“I went to wood­work night classes for sev­eral years and when you’re a farmer, you’re a jack of all trades – you learn wood­work tools, metal work tools, fenc­ing tools.”

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