Farmers are notorious for having a few odd vehicles laying around their property’s, but the Waters family in Coleraine ( Victoria) have more than a few, in fact they have about 70 cars around the farm, some that have been sitting in sheds for 20 years or more.
This weekend, with the help of local real estate company, Southern Grampians Livestock and Real Estate they are hoping to get rid of a few. The collection includes a V8 Porsche Carrera, a Ford XW sedan and an FX Holden ute to a T-model Ford, Torana coupes, 1927 Buick, numerous BMW’s, Land Rovers, Mercedes and a large number of classic Chrysler Valiant sedans including a rare S type plus Chargers , Rangers and various sedans and ute’s.
Local auctioneer John Lawson expects car collectors from all over Australia to come to Coleraine for what is shaping up to be a massive event, and although not in "concours de elegance" condition, there quite a few classic and collectable models in the auction. Car collectors are currently finding it quite difficult to buy cars from the 60’s and 70’s for spares or restoration as most of them have been crushed and sold for scrap by now, so Mr Lawson expects some keen competition from buyers.
The auction will be held on Sunday 24th May and approximately 105 cars will go under the hammer, with about 35 being supplied by another collector.
Local eccentric aristocrat, The 6th Earl of Stradbroke, Keith Rous has placed his vast Mount Fyans estate on the market. The estate, at 15,000 acres is roughly the same size as Bermuda and is located about 30 kilometres north-west of Mortlake. The property includes a mid-1880s homestead with eight bedrooms and a 21-metre hallway with substantial reception rooms.
Amongst the Earl’s eccentricities are listing his recreational activities in “Who's Who” as making babies, once offered to sell his sperm for $200,000 a pop" and changed his family's 1100-year-old motto, from ”I Live in Hope" to "We Fight Like Lions and Breed Like Rabbits”, and the family coat of arms is a Kangaroo sitting on a toilet.
The Earl has also listed for sale, “Henham Hall”, the 1700-hectare family estate in Suffolk (UK). Henham Hall has been owned by the Rous family since 1590 and the Rous family, or De Reus as they were then called, dates back to the Norman conquest in AD1066.
Henham Hall was featured in a recent episode of the Channel 4 (UK) documentary series Time Team and presenter Tony Robinson in an interview with Hektor Rous ( son of the Earl) made special mention of the Hecktors Australian accent and his Australian connection.
Keith has also been quite an entrepreneur over his life and while he had no taste for education, he did have talent for making money in fact he was kicked out of Harrow for running a betting scam. He came to Australia at the age of 20 and set about making his fortune.
After selling encyclopaedias, running a debt-collection service and heading a detective agency, Keith became an Australian citizen, and through judicious land speculation, ending up as owner of the Mt Fyans Estate in Victoria.
The My Fyans property is quite prominent in the Western district with all of the estates fleet of cars painted bright yellow, and the most eye catching is the Bentley ute which is a converted 1956 Bentley S1 Saloon with a custom timber tray where the rear seat passengers would normally be, so instead of chauffeuring a millionaire, the car can now drive sheep to market.
Whales on their way
Logan's beach currently deserted
This years whale season seems to getting off to a slow start with very few local reports and also very low numbers coming in from South Australia. Usually at this time of year there are quite a few reports of Humpback whales moving along the coast and in South Australia there are typically a dozen or more sightings around Victor Harbour in the first two weeks of May however this season, there has only been one sighting in the first two week of May. This doesn't spell doom or gloom but it looks as if this years whale season might be a bit late. There is also signs that whale watching may not be as popular as it once was with the result there aren't as many people staring at the ocean looking for whales.
This week there has been an improvement with a number of sighting from South Australia and generally the South Australian season starts about 4 to 6 weeks ahead of Warrnambool so if everything follows previous history we should start to see whales sometime in the middle of June. Although the only problem with this theory is the whales sometimes don’t follow the plan. Whale watching enthusiasts can follow the progress of the local season on our whale watching page .