Pittwater History

WPCA History - Marg's Reverie

The West Pittwater Community Association began as a Progress Association in 1954. Local resident Marg Molloy recalls those early days.

When we first bought our Little Lovett Bay boatshed in the mid 1900s it was a little brown shed leaning over a lopsided jetty like a drunken sailor. The boys were aged eleven and four. We all loved it with a passion. 

 Pittwater Council was not even a glimmer in local eyes back then, and all of us with jetties on permissive occupancies knew that the Minister could cancel them at the Minister’s whim so everyone paid up and shut up. However, fees were minimal and further crumbs of comfort came from the fact that our vendor told us he would refund our money if the P.O. was cancelled within five years. Still the fact that there was a local residents association was the best comfort of all. 

 The first meeting of the West Pittwater Progress Association we attended was held in the old fire shed in Lovett Bay. It was chaired by President James Kennedy (Jake) Menary while Jean Cunningham of Little Lovett Bay was Secretary. I don’t recall the Treasurer as little money seemed to change hands. Jean may well have carried out the double role. 

 To make room for people the old vehicle in the shed was driven outside, and the elected committee sat on rickety chairs at a makeshift table. Attendees sat on boxes or whatever else was to hand. Each bought something to eat and a cuppa was offered at the meeting’s end. Looking back it seems that most of what was proposed which smacked of progress was not countenanced – more like a non–progress association - but the intent was to look after the Pittwater paradise and keep it from ugly change. 

 The Association’s 21st birthday was held at Tarrangaua where guests were greeted with a coloured tag – yellow for resident, blue for weekender, and red for original family/owner. It was held on Australia Day – but which year it was held is lost in years of protest and progress. 

 While today’s Association is built on the efforts of past committees, the 2006 AGM proved how far, and how well, we old-timers are looked after by the younger residents. I’m sure Jake Menary would be astonished at the breadth of information and effort today’s committee encompasses 

 Margaret Molloy

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