Saturday, 02 September 2023
Loxton Historical Village 50th Anniversary Event
Rod and I are very pleased to be with you today to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Loxton Historical Village.
During my visit to Loxton in April last year, to celebrate the Mardi Gras, I was fortunate to be taken on a tour of the village by Paul Kaesler, Richard and Carolyn Wood, and Peter and Carla Magarey.
It’s great to see everyone again and to be back at the village to mark this important anniversary.
I am heartened to see that the levee kept the river at bay, just as it did in 1974, avoiding damage from last summer’s floods.
I am told the process of identifying and removing items from the village to prevent damage during the floods revealed some long unseen items of considerable significance, so this is also a positive!
Fifty years ago, Loxton Historical Village was opened by then Premier the Hon. Don Dunstan, and it is my pleasure to follow in his footsteps today in marking your half century.
Since its opening, the village has provided locals and visitors alike with a living record of Loxton’s settler history.
It is a worthy memorial to the farmers who came to this district, as early as 1895, to work the land and make a life for themselves and their families.
The challenges associated with this are not to be underestimated, and it is fitting that their memory is honoured through this village.
Over the years the village has grown, with the addition in 2001 of a display to honour the Second World War Returned Solder Settler Irrigation Scheme of 1948. I was pleased to be briefed on the scheme and tour the area last year.
The local Council managed the village until 2019, when Loxton Community Heritage Group, in conjunction with the Loxton Museum of Agricultural Technology, took over this task.
I thank the Council for continuing to work with these groups to grow the displays on show.
At the heart of the village is, and always has been, its volunteers.
I thank sincerely the volunteers, past and present, who have dedicated their energy and enthusiasm to running the village and ensuring its success over many decades.
Loxton is a modestly sized town, and for the village to have more than 60 active volunteers speaks volumes about the culture and values of your community, its spirit and its respect for the town’s origins.
That you have produced a 50th anniversary souvenir booklet further underscores the point.
The village’s attractions also reflect the foresight and generosity of locals, who over the years have donated and documented a large number of items for the public to view.
Congratulations to Loxton Historical Village on reaching its half century.
I wish you all the best for the next 50 years educating the public, who come from far and wide, about the origins of your unique town.