How Harvey inspired a classic
The Harvey community swelled with pride last week as several events paid tribute to author and illustrator May Gibbs to recognise the centenary of her enduring classic, Tales of Snugglepot and Cuddlepie.
Gibbs lived in Harvey from the age of 8 to 10 at the family home Stirling Cottage, where the surrounding bush inspired her gum nut critters.
On Saturday, fans of the beloved children’s book came together to learn about the author’s life, through Age Link Theatre’s play Uncovering May Gibbs.
Harvey Recreation and Cultural Centre manager David Marshall said while Gibbs lived in Harvey for only two years, she later said they were “two of the happiest years of her life”.
“That is the sort of thing that makes communities feel proud about their town,” he said.
“There is and has always been a really strong sense of pride in May Gibbs and the Gibbs family.”
He said it was important for the community to learn the history behind the books to gain “inspiration of the past”.
“That is where a play like this and a theatre company like Age Link Theatre is really important, not only to communities like ours, but the whole State of WA,” Mr Marshall said.
The performance followed an Early Years celebration on Thursday for children six and under, where guests created gum nut boats among other activities.
“It was getting the story across to a new generation that will hopefully see it up for the next 100 years,” Mr Marshall said.
Jennie Deering and Maureen Litton, both of Harvey.
Jess Reeve, baker from The Messy Kitchen, and Harvey Community Resource Centre manager Tracey Ann.
Age Link Theatre actress Rebecca Davis, who portrayed May Gibbs, with her daughter Saskia Halusz, 8, who played a number of roles in the performance.
Michael Longford, of Harvey, with his children Flynn, 8, and Florence, 6.
Cheryl McQueen, of Australind, and Elsie Wilkinson, Marj Eckersley and Olive Buist, all of Harvey.
Denise Sara and Gemma Longford from the Harvey Visitors Centre join David Marshall from the Harvey Recreation and Cultural Centre to celebrate the centenary.
Stella Gasteiger, of Harvey.
Laraine Harding, of Bunbury, and Marilyn Angel, of Harvey.