Yallourn Old Girls' Association Inc YOGA

Formed in 1976 by some girls from Yallourn High School, this association grew to 126 in its first year and 37+ years later, has been steady around the 700 members mark. The Association currently holds a reunion each March - alternating between a lunch at Morwell RSL and a bigger weekend at Woorabinda School Camp on Lake Narracan. They also send out newsletters twice per year with memories and information about future and past reunions, memorabilia for sale etc. For more information, contact Julie George via email julie@yallourn.org or visit the website www.yallourn.org.

Comment

When Lucy Bathurst (Crowe) went overseas in 1974, she visited a gypsy fortune teller who told her she would be instrumental in bringing a number of people together.

The last "Back to Yallourn" was held in March 1976 and was attende dby hundreds of people. On Saturday, 6 March, many ex-students visited the high school where they met and talked to many school friends. June Jardine (Blenkiron) and Lucy Bathurst (Crowe) had the bright idea of holding a dinner on Monday, 8 March, 1976 at the Parkside Motel, Morwell; just a few classmates. The few classmates grew into 126 and the Parkside manager rang Lucy and said "stop anymore coming, the only chair left is a baby's high chair!" Lynette Johnson (White) worked hard alongside the other girls to make the night a success.

At the dinner, June took along a note book and everyone signed their name with the address, the official photographer did not turn up, so John Jardine, who just happened to appear with a camera, took photographs of the occasion. Mildred Crowe sang several songs during the evening.

The night was a great success, everyone wanted a copy of the names and addresses, so it was decided to charge 40c for postage and send out copies. Nancy Barnett (Smith) collected the money and June wrote down the names of those wanting a copy.

On 8 May, 1976, many students gathered in the Northern Reserve Hall to view phtoos taken the night of the dinner, everyone agreed that the dinners should continue each year, so YOGA emerged.

The first committee consisted of:
President - Lucy Bathurst (Crowe)
Secretary - Val Embry (Kerr)
Treasurer - Tess Gray (Whitehouse)

Gloria Stewart (Thorpe), June and Neta Billingsley (Spittall) were present at this first meeting and worked very hard together to get things organised. Tess created the name YOGA and everyone approved.

The first official dinner was held in March 1977, another huge success.

These dinners/lunches have been held regularly since and now alternate between a lunch at Morwell RSL and a much bigger weekend at Woorabinda School Camp on Lake Narracan. Comradeship still prevails with some members coming from all over Autralia and even overseas.

The current committee and in existence over the past 20+ years, consists of:

President - Judy Ross (King)
Vice President - Jean Fox (Hattam)
Secretary - Julie George (Francis)
Treasurer - Chris French (Francis)
Members: Sonja Bates (Ostlund) (dec); Eril Esler-Davies (Stephens); Valma Frost (Hamilton) (dec); June Jardine (Blenkiron); Mavis McAllister (Webb); Carol Summersgill (Hunt); Helene Warner (Wall)

"Strange"...what the gypsy said to Lucy came true!!....Jean Cook (Tate) & Julie George (Francis)