It was 1964 and I was in my 4th Year at Plympton High School. I was an overweight lad who was called “Humphrey darling” (after a cartoon character) by two blond sheilas every time they saw me in the schoolyard. I would always run away.
I had already split my pants trying to vault the “wooden horse” out on the school oval and a young, fit, soon to be famous Greg Chappell (Austalian Cricket Captain) had told me to “fuck-off” in the short time that he was there!
My best friend was John Ward, who talked like a girl and walked everywhere on tippy toes.
But magic was on the horizon “The Beatles” were coming to Adelaide minus Ringo Starr.
Big “Blob” Francis (5AD Radio) had convinced Brian Epstein in 1963 to bring them here.
Paul McCartney said he would like to see Adelaide and the Plympton girls squealed with delight.
So, as the Big Day approached when they would whizz past the back of Plympton High down Anzac Highway the excitement grew and grew!
And then, the Headmaster of Plympton High School, a Mister Goldsworthy, nicknamed “Chrome Dome”, who was the spitting image of Adolph Eichmann, said “NO!”
“The Beatles are rubbish and you shouldn’t be wasting valuable study time going over to Anzac Highway!”
The student mass gasped in astonishment when the announcement was made in the middle of a dusty quadrangle.
Quickly the rebellious sheilas and the blondies organised a Strike Committee and had quickly told our balding headmaster. “Let us see the The Beatles”.
Goldsworthy relented and we saw John, George, Paul and Jimmy Nicol (Ringo’s replacement) go roaring down Anzac Highway.
One girl knocked herself out on a stobie pole in her mad chase after the Fab Three’s car.
Meanwhile, half a million people had gathered in Adelaide city to welcome the boys from Liverpool.
The Griffin Press, Marion Road, Netley was just down the road from the Old Guv in the 1970s.
At the Guv it was sneeringly referred to as “Head Office” and the big boss was a Napoleon like character known as Bryan Price. The final make up of the Griffin Press was a combination of three separate companies (I think).
They were The Griffin Press, The Craftsman Press and Vardon Price. The Griffin was owned and run by Advertiser Newspapers and the Chairman of the Board was the venerable Sir Lloyd Dumas.
Photo: Neil (The Moose) Lavender and his missus Pam on their Wedding Day.
The Advertiser was a bastion of conservatism in South Australia (and still is). But it didn’t stop them from publishing Orion Classics (pornography), Playboy and the very raunchy Hustler (Larry Flint’s rag) at Griffin Press..
I’m not sure of what year this photo was taken, probably late 1960s and I can’t see many of the Griffin Comp. Apprentices.
But I can see Bob Crane, Ron “Touch” Walters, Merv Mules (four eyes), Graham Tyler, Hank Bykker (I think) and Colin Giles.
The telegram was discovered by Peter Plowman — a volunteer with the local Peterborough History Group.
Mr Plowman spent his working life in printing businesses and did not know why telegram was kept.
PHOTO: Peter Plowman found the telegram while cleaning the Peterborough printing shop. (ABC News: Patrick Martin)
The unlikely find had special significance for the printing buff.
“I had a grandfather that fought at Somme for England, so the telegram has a significance for me as well as the print shop and the local community,” Mr Plowman said.
Lieutenant Colonel David Edmonds unveiled the carefully restored telegram at a public ceremony at Peterborough. Lt. Colonel Edmonds said the find had significance for the whole region.
“Our information is that the local regiment was the 9th Australian Light Horse Regiment — they formed the 9th Light Horse [Regiment] in the First World War — it was the second light horse regiment to be raised here in South Australia,” Lt Colonel Edmonds said.
“All through the mid north of South Australia, from Peterborough to Port Pirie, Port Augusta all the way down to Kadina and Clare, the 9th Light Horse Regiment drew its soldiers who went away in the First World War.”
“It’s a very important piece of local history and Australian history, too.”
He said it was an honour to unveil the telegram as a former commander of the 3rd/9th Light Horse Regiment, which still existed in Adelaide.
He said the battle — which left more than one million dead and wounded across all sides — represented the last German offensive of the war.
PHOTO: Lieutenant Colonel David Edmonds stands beside the 100-year-old telegram. (ABC News: Patrick Martin)
“The telegram shows that the Germans were still well and truly on the front foot.”
“It was shortly thereafter that the war turned in the Allies’ favour.”
He said the war impacted communities throughout Australia “for decades after the war”.