Coffs Coast headlines in history - the early 1950s

  • The Coffs Harbour and District Ex-Servicemen and Women's Memorial Club officially opened in June 1950.
  • The Coffs Coast experienced its wettest week on record when cyclonic winds and torrential rain battered the town for seven days. The freighter Bangalow became stuck in shallow water on June 24, and was not re-floated until July 13.
  • Half of the fishing fleet in the harbour was badly damaged or completely destroyed.
  • The Bellinger River recorded flooding 2-8 feet higher than anything on record. 
  • Mrs Betty Sara, aged 29, caused much excitement in Bellingen when she gave birth to quadruplets - two boys and two girls. Meanwhile, seven sets of twins were born in Coffs Harbour between May and September.

 

  • In August the Advocate raised its price for the first time in its 43 years of operation. An issue now cost three pence.
  • Coffs Harbour Rotary Club held its inaugural billy cart derby. A crowd of approximately 2,500 people gathered at the event, held in Collingwood Street.

 

Coffs Harbour Primary School students sitting in the kindergarten area at the front of the building (facing Salamander Street).
Coffs Harbour Primary School students sitting in the kindergarten area at the front of the building (facing Salamander Street). Jean Newlands
  • In November, a fire brigade was established in Sawtell. 

 

  • July 21, 1951 recorded the lowest temperature ever in Coffs Harbour, with the mercury reaching -2 degrees celsius.

 

1952

  • In January 1952 history was made on the Coffs Coast when Mrs Del Patterson became the first woman elected to Dorrigo Shire Council.
  • Coffs Harbour dominated the Woolgoolga Surf Club's 20th annual surf carnival, winning all the surfing events. In February, Coffs Harbour competitor John Bloomfield won the senior belt race championship in Byron Bay.

 

This image of Coffs Harbour Primary School was taken during the early 1950's. The photograph has been shared by the family of Miss Jean Newlands who was a teacher there at the time. this photo show the back of the newly built infants block.
This image of Coffs Harbour Primary School was taken during the early 1950's. The photograph has been shared by the family of Miss Jean Newlands who was a teacher there at the time. this photo show the back of the newly built infants block. Jean Newlands
  • Bushfires ravaged the area in February. Gale force winds and 40 degree days worsened conditions, 12 banana plantations and several properties were damaged.
  • The bushfires prompted the establishment of the Boambee bush fire brigade.
  • The Advocate reported that the new Woolworths store, which had opened in May, "at times was so crowded that it was almost impossible to move and shopping was carried out under the most uncomfortable conditions".
  • The 1952 Coffs Harbour show was deemed a huge success, with a front page Advocate article claiming that "long time residents of the district who have at every Coffs Harbour Show for the past 35 years, unanimously agreed that the 1952 show was easily the best on record".
  • 4000 Coffs Coast locals lined High St in August to catch a glimpse of former Coffs Harbour resident Marjorie Jackson, who had won gold at the Helsinki Olympic Games.
  • In August, a report stated 3542 aircraft had used the Coffs Harbour Airport, which catered to over 20,000 people.

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Local Partners