Newsletter for the Rotary Club of Geraldton Greenough - Issue No.: 511 Issue Date: 18 Feb, 2019

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Birdwood House and the Obelisk

The RSL in Geraldton Today


Bluey Muir formally introduced Ken Morris (RSL).

Ken is the VP of Geraldton RSL and the Board member on RSLWA representing the 13 Midwest clubs. He served in the RAAF from 1967 – 1991 after which he and wife, Jenny settled in South Greenough. They ran several small businesses until 2006 when they sold up and caravanned around Australia for four years before settling in their Holland Street unit.


The history of the RSL in WA goes back to early 1916 when the 11th Battalion Association was formed to look after the welfare of returning servicemen as they were treated poorly by authorities. This extended to the 3rd Infantry Brigade and in May, 1916 the name was altered to the Returned Soldiers’ Association and opened to all units.

The WA branch was chartered on 25th April, 1917.

PURPOSE: The RSL was founded in 1916 to provide comradeship and support to Australia’s veterans and families. The core mission has never changed but has evolved to meet the needs of each generation of servicemen and women.


The ols Soldier's Institute

General Birdwood

City of Geraldton RSL:

The GSS&AMI Trust was formed during WW1. They initially leased the old Esplanade Hostel in Marine Terrace,now the site of the ABC.

On 25th April 1917, returned servicemen gathered at the Club Hotel (now Ocean Centre) at a reception held by the mayor. Following dinner they retired to the Smoking Room, where they formed a branch of the RSA. Capt. Robinson was elected President.

In 1934 the land on the corner of Chapman Road and Forrest St was transferred to the trust and Birdwood House was built.

The obelisk, constructed from Darling Range granite was unveiled by Lieut Govenor Sir James Mitchell on 1st September,1935.

The Cross of Sacrifice is at the Geraldton War Cemetery. Each year the City of Geraldton RSL holds a pilgrimage to the cemetery and commemorative service on the Sunday following Armistice Day followed by a lunch at Birdwood House.

There is a new plaque, replacing the old, damaged sign due to be installed at Birdwood House.

Questions followed from Doc, Dan and WXL.

Rob Houwen gave a vote of thanks.

Author: Geoff Wood

Published: 15 September, 2018


Meeting Rosters
Setup & Door
Setup & Door
Guest Speaker Host
Invocation & Toast
Raffle & Rotary Cor
Guest Speaker Thanks
Fines Master
20 Feb, 19
Paul Pirrottina
Jim Dillon
Hugh Lavery
Raj Mavath
Geoff Watson
Geoff Wood
Kim Stokes
Steve Muir
27 Feb, 19
Ray Haynes
Bruce Ralph
Graeme Bylund
Laurie Dines
Luke Bayley
Clark Scarff
Steve Muir
Michelle Mitchell
06 Mar, 19
John Gooch
Scott Bennett
Tony Emmott
Peter Sukiennik
Phil Martin
Lew Hills
Douglas Bruce
Laurie Dines
13 Mar, 19
Robert Houwen
Hugh Lavery
Kevin Watson
Steve Muir
Grant Woodhams
Jim Dillon
Paul Pirrottina
Kevin Watson
20 Mar, 19
© Copyright 2006 R. L. Dender All Rights Reserved