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No. 29 – Hello Farina Group Supporters

Here are some of Tom’s notes made during his recent reconnaissance to Farina with Bob Brownlee and Peter Harris in November.

Replacing Ghosts With Real People:

Previous committee strategy in deciding the next component of Farina to develop or redevelop has been to refurbish the lost elements of the early township. In doing this, past history associated with structures is reappearing. The desire now is to add the “people factor” to these sites. For example, a story board sited between Bell’s Store and the Exchange Hotel will tell the store history of the town through the Bell and Mansfield family connections and of life at the Exchange Hotel through its people and happenings. This is a work in progress.

Progressively we plan to do this where ever we can gather material about blacksmiths, farriers/ saddlers, police – anybody who lived and worked in Farina.

This is done through pergolas and story boards at the relevant sites. Each of these cost $1500. Sponsorship from three FRG members and two supportive organisations have enabled five of our pergola/storyboards to be planned and built.

Amongst our 300 + supporters are a growing number of descendants – we invite you singly or as collective family groups, to talk to us about presenting and honouring your family’s heritage at Farina, by this method.

This is how we are removing the ghosts from a ghost town. We are replacing them with real people and their stories.


The priority of doing things in our programme is now greatly influenced by funding availability. Nominated sponsorship enables immediate action.

To this end we welcome” S. Kidman and Co” through their General Manager, Greg Campbell, as a major sponsor. They fit the above categories very obviously and are sponsoring the renovation of the 1880’s cattle wagon (arriving for the 2014 programme) and the re construction of the original cattle loading ramp. Welcome aboard Greg and Company.

The Farina Bakery:

Our present bakery/food preparation system does NOT meet 2014 Health and Food handling standards. If scrutinised officially, it would be closed down. The process to date has proven to us this an important part of the Farina story and our ongoing fundraising.

Positive decisions taken were:

We are going to continue to present Farina to the Australian community
We will upgrade our Food processing method to the benefit of volunteers and customers.

Under guidance of our Baker in Chief, Martin MacLennan, a purpose built Bakery Caravan has been designed and built.

In future, baking only will happen in the underground bakery. Preparation, storage and serving will be done in the Bakery Caravan, which integrates with our cafe marquee by means of a 4 metre long server wall opening into the cafe.

Tourists will be welcomed and managed in the bakery.

This will not be a cost factor to the existing Farina Restoration Group budget.

It has been enabled by a group of volunteers providing personal loans, forming a Funding Syndicate on a $5000 fixed deposit basis (reviewed annually). The base cost was $35000 with expected final costs of another $10000 approximately.

Without this facility our bakery/cafe has earned in excess of $10000 net for the previous 2 years.

In the off season, July to April, it will be available for public/commercial hire in Adelaide, managed by Martin MacLellan.

Without this facility we risk being closed down

We owe it to our volunteers to provide an optimum work place

We are in this for the long haul.

Tom and the committee wish all our wonderful supporters a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year !