Date: 27th October 2014
Guests from five provinces and many local Karoo residents attended the National Heritage Symposium held in Richmond the weekend of October 16-18th. All presentations received rave reviews and they included Dr Judy McGuire of Prince Albert who has surveyed 120 Upper Karoo farmsteads, Prof Bruce Rubidge who had the audience in peals of laughter, and Graham Viney (who set the record straight about verandahs added on to Karoo houses and managed to make it just in time after being flown in on the plane that brought the Muratie Wine Estate wines for the Saturday night wine pairing with Annatjie Reynolds of Karoo Venison at the MAP Gallery).
Dr Neil Viljoen, who is well-known to Gautengers as the Curator of Northwards, the Herbert Baker house dominating the Parktown Ridge and home to the Dale Laces from 1904 to 1911, has assembled a huge amount of information on the family and he entertained the delegates for about an hour on Josephine Dale Lace’s life at Richmond, schooling in England, marriage to John and life in Johannesburg – not to mention a host of admirers. His PhD in Shakespeare adds to the colorful way in which he reintroduced the flamboyant Rand Lady back to Richmond for the first time since 1879.
“We had the greatest time and it was one of our best Symposiums ever,” said Len Raymond, new Chairman of Heritage Association of South Africa. He also commented that the gala evening, catered by Vetmuisplaaskombuis, was the best food ever served not just at any Heritage SA function, but at any function ever! The other Trustees voted for the 2015 year are: Carol Ann Podd from Swellendam, Chris Young from Drakenstein, Jacuqes Stolz from Egoli, Alan Montgomery from Mandela Bay, Jayson Clark from Tulbagh and the lovely Beverly-Ann Small from Alberton.
The Lifetime Service Award for Richmond was given to Oom Christie and Tannie Wilma Visser of Richmond for their 20 years of volunteer work at the Richmond Saddle Horse Museum. National Awards were received by Letitia Myburgh, head of Standard Bank Heritage, Dennis Adams of Egoli and Prof Leon Hattingh of VOC. The prestigious Heritage Association of South Africa Gold Medal award went to Dr Judy McGuire.
Other food enjoyed by guests included many Karoo classics such as vetkoek, roosterbroed, koeksisters, lamb chops, venison filet, springbok Carpaccio, a new take on pumpkin fritters and plenty of biltong and droewors. Catering was supplied by Vetmuis, Bella’s Kitchen, Alida Oliphant Catering and the Richmond Farmer’s Association. Most guests went home to partake in a 1 week vegetarian diet having indulged in so much fine Karoo meat.
After such a successful event, the Richmond Saddle Horse Museum & Heritage Society will host the Birds of Paradise weekend to benefit the Karoo’s endangered bird of paradise, the Blue Crane and to celebrate Richmond’s own Bird of Paradise (Josephine Dale Lace’s) birthday on April 10th. The weekend aims to explore the possibilities of World Heritage Status, allow guests the opportunity to be hosted on farms, showcase Karoo fashion and feature horses, bicycles and women of the Great Karoo.
ISSUED BY: Richmond Saddle Horse Museum & Heritage Society
ON BEHALF OF: RICHMOND SADDLE HORSE MUSEUM & HERITAGE SOUTH AFRICA
Caption: Richmond Saddle Horse Museum over the 2014 Symposium