Riversdale, Goulburn managers take a step back | Riversdale Ramblings

IT'S TIME: Ros Loftus and Dawn Giles, pictured at The Lodge, are stepping back from their management roles at Riversdale.
IT'S TIME: Ros Loftus and Dawn Giles, pictured at The Lodge, are stepping back from their management roles at Riversdale.

Ros Loftus and Dawn Giles have decided to pass on the Riversdale management baton and would like to say thank you.

The beginning

Where to start: perhaps way back in 1820 with Governor Macquarie siting the township of Goulburn Plains, as it was known, on the banks of the Wollondilly and then maybe it’s Matt Healey, not your average bloke, ex-convict made good who built a racecourse and pub first up and his lasting legacy, the stone stables still standing at Riversdale.

Next has to be Anne Richards who built the house in stages beginning c1839/40 and who planted our famous medlar.

John Fulljames follows, he planted our still thriving old apple and three plums amongst hundreds of others in the 1860s. He named the property Riversdale – thanks John. Next up, and perhaps the most important, certainly the longest residents: the Twynams who were here for nearly 100 years. The Twynam stories are legion and Emily’s legacy of some amazing artworks is priceless.

The middle

Moving on to that fantastic group of volunteers headed by Jean Friend who redesigned and developed the garden after the National Trust purchase in the late 1960s and the amazing NT branch pre- 2001.

A bit of a glitch in 2001 we won’t go into but Debbie Sibbick saved the day in 2009.


And then it’s us and all our fantastic volunteers

And oh what a bumpy but wonderful ride it’s been, you will never know how hard, how rewarding, how much fun and how satisfying it has been working with a group of such superwomen (and the odd man!).

Riversdale has always been known for its superwomen. Nothing would have happened without you all, there would be no accolades and awards for the garden and no rejuvenation and classification of the house/collection/ museum. What a team! Thank you.

(Some of it has actually been fun, remember the cider ad made at Riversdale)

Thankyou to all the lovely people who have supported our events. A very special thankyou to the Visitors Information Centre and the council, we wouldn’t be where we are now without you. Thanks to 2GN too.

Next up, the almost last thank you is to the new committee stepping up to take over: David Thomas: Chair, Aija Podzuns: Deputy Chair, Marie Kennedy: Treasurer and Kim Markham: Secretary – and you don’t get rid of us that easily, I’ll still be in the garden and Dawn will look after the museum and shop. Your chance to meet the newbies will be at the Devonshire Tea on Sunday. See you there.

Finally, to The Goulburn Post, how amazing you have been. Thank you.

  • Riversdale garden is open Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays 10am to 2pm.  House closed for restoration until further notice except pop-up National Trust shop and mini archaeological exhibition. Located at 2 Twynam Drive, North Goulburn. Phone 4821 4741.


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