What is your connection to Moorabool?
I moved to Bacchus Marsh from the eastern side of Melbourne. We are the fifth generation in orchards.
How long have you lived in the area?
I’ve live in the area since 1959.
What brought you to Bacchus Marsh?
The subdivision near Burwood took over the area and we sold up and were looking for a large block of land. We found this property not long after.
You must have seen a lot of changes in the area over nearly 60 years. Tell me about the biggest changes you’ve seen in Bacchus Marsh in your time here.
When the freeway was put in, the town just moved ahead in leaps and bounds. In the latter few years it has become a suburb of Melbourne, but with that country time atmosphere.
Your two sons now work with you on the orchard, as well as your wife Glenda and a small team. What’s kept you in farming for so long?
I’ve been doing it since I was a kid. I was educated at Box Hill Secondary School … when I left school after intermediate, I stayed home and worked on the farm. I’ve always been tied up with fruit and vegetables. I just love it. It’s my thing. When we first started out here, it was all apples. We then changed to various types of soft fruit – apricots, peaches and plums … the last thing we planted here was persimmons. I’ve semi-retired due to my eyesight, but it’s still of great interest to me. As long as I can see the farm from the house, I will probably always have a hand in it.
What’s the biggest challenge you’ve faced as a producer?
It’s been the same challenge for years and years – the weather. Water has been a challenge from time to time. But general weather patterns have been the biggest challenge. We’ve survived floods and droughts and more floods and droughts.
What would people be surprised to know about you?
One of my hobbies was breeding and showing Clydesdale horses.
The last one I had died about two years ago.
Would you every pack up and move to the city?
You’d never get me down to the city, ever. I don’t like the city. I spent 55 years in the markets, and that was city enough for me. I love living in Bacchus Marsh because of its proximity to everything. I don’t need to move anywhere else.