7. Watery Plains and the Butlers

Our Butler grandparents, Walter and Alma maintained strong links with “Watery Plains”, the property established by Alma’s Great-grandfather, Donald Sutherland. They were good friends with Garnet & Roy Whittle, who inherited the property from their mother Amelia Whittle and their aunt, Ada Cornish. The Butlers and their sons, Ross & Ron visited “Watery Plains” on many occasions as shown in the photos that follow.

Aunt Ada Cornish & Alma Butler

Sutherland descendants at Watery Plains, 1920s

Gwen Bell, Alma & Ross Butler..."this is where we had to wade the river"

Gwen Bell, Ella Whittle, Alma & Ross Butler, 1920s

Alma, Garnet Whittle & Walter at Watery Plains

Homestead at Watery Plains, 1940s

Over the years the Whittle family also visited the Butlers in Sydney.

Geraldine, Roy, John & Ella Whittle in Sydney

When Sue & I were children, we visited Watery Plains on two occasions with Mum, Dad & Nanna Butler. The first visit was in December 1956/January 1957 , when Dad drove our Standard Vanguard to Melbourne…..it took  3 days with stop-overs at Yass & Albury en route. We stayed in Melbourne for a few nights (drove past the 1956 Olympic Games site ) and then crossed Bass Strait on the “Taroona” . We visited the Whittles at Watery Plains, but stayed in Launceston at the old Brisbane Hotel. After some time in Hobart, which included Christmas and a visit to the Cadbury factory (only for me as Sue was too young…much to her great disappointment) we drove back to the north of Tasmania & Nanna decided that she & I could stay on  at “the farm” i.e. Watery Plains & then fly home to Sydney. 

Lyndal & Nanna Butler, 1957

Ella Whittle, Lyndal & Alma at airport

Our second holiday at Watery Plains was in January, 1959 and Mum, Dad, Nanna Butler, Sue & I flew by TAA Viscount to Melbourne & then DC3 across Bass Strait to Launceston.

Lyndal & Sue with Miss Lawton (former Meriden teacher) wearing our "American" dresses from Auntie Jess

We stayed for there for 2 weeks and Ella & Geraldine Whittle took us on several day trips to visit friends, Entally House and other sights. A memorable visit was to the property of Jack & Ann Sansom in Evandale. We were served a delicious afternoon tea in their front drawing room & then Jack brought a Shetland pony right through the house and out the front door so that we could have a pony ride.

Lyndal...the equestrienne par excellence

Sue holding onto Lyndal for dear life

Butler ladies with Geraldine at Entally House, 1959

Watery Plains, 1959

Lyndal's 12th birthday at Watery Plains

The Whittles & Butlers at Watery Plains, 1959

 Watery Plains was sold by the Whittles in the mid 1960s & so passed out of the Sutherland family.

The following photos were taken when Sue & I were holidaying  in Tasmania in 1982….with a much renovated Watery Plains homestead in the distance

  

3 Responses to 7. Watery Plains and the Butlers

  1. Carole Sarvis says:

    I remember Ella and Geraldine from when I was a child. Ella was a friend of my aunt, Dorothy Thirkell.

    • Lyndal says:

      Hello Carole,
      Thank you for your comments regarding Ella & Geraldine Whittle…Tasmania has always been a special place for me with fond memories of happy holidays there so many years ago now. Sounds as if you were a local if you remember the shetland pony at Sansoms’ property…do you still live there?
      Regards, Lyndal.

  2. Carole Sarvis says:

    I forgot to say I remember the shetland pony too at Sansom’s at Riverview, Evandale.

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