Relive the lives of Urunga pilots

RESTORING the old Pilot House overlooking the Urunga estuary was a project full of surprises for Sheila and Michael Pegum.

One they have now turned into a beautifully illustrated book ‘Crossing the Bar – A History of the Urunga Pilot Station'.

“As preparation for the restoration I wrote a comprehensive heritage study,” Mr Pegum, who is also an architect, said.

“The book grew from there as we discovered all these stories about the life of the pilots and the port.”

Mrs Pegum, a history teacher with a passion for Australia's social history, became intrigued by personal accounts of early life and began trawling the NSW State Archives, government and shipping records.

“I've gathered material that tells the story of Urunga,which is a such a vital part of the area's history. As much as possible I've used the words of those who were eye witnesses,” she said.

The book, which is illustrated with 150 meticulously restored historical photos, sells for $25 with all proceeds going to the Bellinger Valley Historical Society. The official launch will be on January 9, at the Urunga Uniting Church, 1.30pm.



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