Sorell Football Club

Tasmanian Archives, Libraries Tasmania, Arch Rollings Collection, NS1553-1-298, Sorell Premiers 1929

History
The Sorell Football Club was formed in 1883 and celebrated 125 years of being a club in 2008 when students from Sorell School (Ben and Brad) gathered this information.

Sorell has had three home grounds:

  • first was past the last house of Sorell on the Arthur Highway,
  • second was the Sorell Memorial Oval and
  • third is Pembroke Park the one currently used by Sorell.

Sorell has played in the following leagues:

  • South East Districts Football Association
  • Tasmanian Amateur Football League in 1963
  • Southern Football League in 1996
  • and finally the Southern Regional Football League.

In the very early days of the club, all country clubs played only challenge games for a trophy.

Sorell were originally called Pembroke in 1881. The major sponsor of the club is Pembroke Hotel. Max Tuttle was one of the best players in the state. His family owned the Pembroke Hotel. In 1933 he was asked to play for Collingwood but instead he went back to Sorell and captained and coached Sorell.

In 2008, Sorell have 20 life members, and with Tim Weir as president they are sure to win another game!

Some photos taken while visiting the club rooms, showing the building, the oval and some of the trophies.

Premierships

The club has won premierships in 1937, 1938, 1939, 1952, 1960, 1961, 1962, 1966, 1983 and 1990. All the premierships are on display at the Sorell Hall. It took until 1932 for them to win their first premiership.

Players who have played AFL
Only three players Royce Hart, Tom Collier, Sam Iles have played AFL football.

Royce Hart was a determined player who was willing to put his body on the line for his team. He was so determined that he got a concussion at least six times each season. When he was at school, he played school football.He was vice captain of the team. He played 187 games and kicked 369 goals for Richmond from 1965-1977. Royce was the Richmond captain for four years (1972-1975) and won the best and fairest in 1969 and 1972. He was an All Australian in 1969 and is in both Richmond’s and the AFL’s Team of the Century.

He also tried coaching for a few years with Footscray (1980-1982) but it didn’t go to well. Footscray only won 7 games in his first two years. He trained the players too hard and sacked the players who couldn’t keep up. He ended up getting sacked and started coaching the Richmond reserves then returned to Tasmania and was a commentator for ABC.

Mark Clothier has the most games played in an Eagles jumper with 410 games.

 

More information from George Quinn interview

The club is 125 years old in 2008, having been founded in 1883. ( Of interest there was a prior club called Pembroke, which started in 1881, possibly changing it’s name to Sorell).

The Amateurs split into Old Scholars and Southern Football League in 1996 and Sorell joined the SFL. It had one year – 2002 when all clubs played Premier League, after the end of the State Wide league, otherwise it has been in the SFL Regional League.

Early Football

In the very early days of the club, all country clubs played only “challenge” games for a trophy, but sometimes for a pennant and badge. Rules were made up at a meeting of clubs interested in playing in that year and then a team challenged the club who was holding the trophy. Between 1900 and 1910, Sorell had a very successful team, winning the Brown Trophy, which originated in New Norfolk, in 1904,07,08.

They also won the Ellis Dean Trophy, which was donated by the Warden of New Norfolk Council and MHA, Ellis Dean, in 1908. The game had to be played at New Norfolk.

The Sorell footballers and supporters gathered at the Sorell Station, having walked or coming by horse transport. They packed the Sorell Train to Bellerive, where they caught a ferry to New Norfolk. They all walked to the Football Ground followed by most of the population of the town.

They won the game and headed back to Sorell. On the way back they made up the following poem to celebrate their win :-

“ Dean, Dean, Dean, the good old Ellis Dean
It is the finest trophy that New Norfolk ever seen.
We’re not going to tarry, but we are going to carry
Back to Sorell, the good old Ellis Dean. “

George Quinn, remembers his sister Connie reciting this poem, if New Norfolk was ever mentioned. George still knows the poem off by heart. George also has a photo of Connie dressed as Miss Sorell Football. She looks a bit like Queen Victoria

This amazing team also won the Hean Pennant in 1907. This Pennant originated in Sorell, having been donated by the Warden of the Sorell Council, Alec Hean MHA.

Football Grounds

I know of three grounds used for football in Sorell :-

Just past the last house in the Sorell township, on the right hand side of the Arthur Highway, roughly opposite the turn off to Nugent.
The Sorell Racecourse. The team played in the middle of the racecourse.
The Sorell Memorial Oval, between the Sorell Hall and the Cypress macrocarpa trees.
Pembroke Park from 1994 until today. ( Pembroke Park was the Sorell Racecourse, until it was destroyed by the 1967 bushfires.)
Of course there were other teams in our area in past times, at Nugent, Wattle Hill, Forcett Bream Creek, Copping and Dunalley, that I know of. And there is a current club at Dodges Ferry.

There were other successful teams prior to Sorell entering into the South East Football Association .

In 1920, Sorell won the Hart Trophy.
In 1926, Sorell won the Hilyard Trophy.
In 1929, Sorell won the Tuttle Trophy

The Tuttles were the owners of the Pembroke Hotel and their son Max Tuttle was one of the best players in Tasmania at the time. He played for Sorell as a boy, then went to Cananore. He was selected in the 1933 Carnival Team and was asked to play with Collingwood, but declined. Instead he came back to be Captain and coach of Sorell

All of these trophies are on display in the Sorell Hall. They should be on display in the Sorell Football Club and I believe that they should be moved as soon as there is a suitable position for them.

Pembroke Park was built by the Sorell Sports Committee in 1983/1984.
The Changerooms were opened in 1984.

The two grounds and the changerooms were built by volunteer labour led by the committee, who were looking for a place for junior football and cricket. The leaders of this group were Allan Lovell and Peter Connell ( dec.)

They maintained the grounds for another ten years, before the council asked the Sorell Football Club to move over there. The council started to assist with the maintenance and upgrades of the main oval took place. The first mowing of the grounds was done by using a car to pull a gang mower. One of the first cars used was Denis Pigden’s green Woolsley. Sprinklers and heavy hoses were used for irrigation and were all moved by hand. Most of this and the mowing was done by Allan Lovell.

Alan played school football with Royce Hart and he invited him to the opening and still has the football signed by him, on the opening day.

Royce Hart played school football with Sorell. He was Vice Captain of the team. Only a hand full of players, who were Sorell Juniors have played VFL/AFL football. Royce Hart ( Richmond), Sam Iles (Collingwood), Tom Collier (Brisbane Lions). Alexander Gilmour was drafted by Richmond, but did not play a game.

Sources

http://www.sorellfootballclub.com/ most of the info above was from this website
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sorell_Eagles

Interview with George Quinn

Sorell Library

INTERVIEW: Christine – librarian 2008

The present Sorell library opened 17th of December 1988. Before that it was at the Sorell Council Chambers and before that it was at the Sorell Memorial Hall. The piano at the Sorell library was donated by the Rotary Club, Lions Club and the Sorell Council on the 22nd of March 1991. Some of the pictures were donated when it was first opened.

Around 1986-1987 the library was too small for the amount of people using it. Eileen Brooker circulated a petition amongst the community proposing that a library be built to commemorate Australia’s bicentenary. This is the building they’re in now. It was built through funding from the local government and the state library. This year 2008 they celebrate their 20th birthday. It was purposely built for a library. Before it was built on, the land was part of the saleyards.

Every now and again they have authors speak at the library. People who have spoken there are Roy Bridges, Neil Davis and some local authors. For 138 years the Sorell library was moved around until it reached the place it’s in now. Until 1978 the libraries were run by the council or the Red Cross. In 1978, it started being run by the state library.

An early record of another library was where the antiques shop use to be, then it moved to the cottage on the corner where Mitre Ten is, then it moved to the memorial hall in the ladies cloakroom, then it was moved to the old Sorell Council Chambers. The children from Sorell School use to go down to the cottage and pick books. During the second World War the librarian use to take the books up to the school in boxes for the children to choose their books.

Around 1980 the library moved back to the Magistrates Court behind the council chambers.

Pictures taken by Brad and Sean

Sorell Newsagency

The Sorell Newsagency is at 15 Gordon Street, Sorell Tasmania 7172.

Interview with Lisa Peacock 2008

Ken and Lisa Peacock bought the Sorell Newsagency because they wanted to try something new and have a new outlook. They have four staff at the moment. Their opening and closing hours are 6:30AM till 6:00PM. They, personally, first opened it in August 2007. It has never been rebuilt. It has always been a newsagency. Four people has owned it including them. No disasters have happened. Originally it was bigger but it was split in half to make a lolly shop on one side.

The Sorell Newsagency was built in 1962 and it was built because it was the only one in Sorell. The size of the building is 468 square metres. The wall material is brick veneer. It has got a tile roof and its Valuation Property Classification is Retail/Business.

In 1983 it was sold for $65,000 but in 2004 it was sold for $400,000.

Sorell Saleyards

The Sorell Saleyards were first opened in 1876. Brohde’s great Grandparents Faye and Jabez Little with their four children who lived in Forcett attended the Sales for three decades and also in the Seventies with their grandson Jerry (my dad.) They spent many happy times at the Sorell Saleyards.

Everyone that attended the Sales (every second Monday) found it a time to catch up with family and friends. The day the Sales closed for good was in 1984 and everything was dismantled. The Sorell Sales were right in the centre of Sorell, and the purpose of the Sales was like a Market. At the Saleyards they sold things such as cattle, sheep, pigs, chickens, and vegetables.

The Auctioneer in the fifties, sixties and seventies and up to 1982 when the Sales were finally closed down was David Stringer. He was also accompanied by auctioneers John Denholm and Geoff Brown. Lots of people went to the Sales. About 300!

The Sales would get their animals transported in a cart. The Saleyards were set out in pens, there was a big shed for poultry sales and stock yards for cattle and sheep, there was also another big shed to keep vegetables in. Farmers used to bring their vegetables that they had grown and they sold the fresh produce to all residents of the local municipality and beyond. It was also very good for the local business people, the hotels would do a roaring trade and the local takeaway shops and bakeries also benefited. The Sales ran for about 50 years but now, there are know remains of the Sorell Saleyards. But then they wanted bigger and better that’s why they wanted to build Woolworths.

Tasmanian Archives, Libraries Tasmania, Arch Rollings Collection, NS1553-1-106

In our days these would be the costings of their products:

Sheep:25 pence
Pigs:80 pence
Cattle:20 cents
Chickens:5 cents
Vegetables:1 cent

Over time, many country saleyards have gone by the wayside, but many of the memories attached to them live on.

Dal Hyland was born at Sorell, but lived at Cambridge, and spent many happy times as a child at the Sorell saleyards in the late 1940’s. The saleyard was smack bang in the heart of Sorell, the post and rail fences are long gone and the site asphalted over, for a supermarket car park.

Dal Hyland can remember regular extended family gatherings on sale days with his grandparents, retired farmers who had moved to Sorell.

“The saleyards were all set out in pens, all post and rail fences; there was a big shed for poultry sales. Another shed for veggie sales and different farmers would bring in their vegetables for sale, market gardeners. I remember Mr Bresnehan from out the back of Forcett driving in with his vegetables with his horse and buggy.”

“There was a gentlemen from Bellerive that had a corner shop, he used to go down every sale day, he would stand up on a platform and he would cut the potatoes or the turnips in half and hold them up, so people could see what they were bidding for, the quality of them.”

Dal says the day was more than just a day to buy and sell; it was also a day to catch up on news and renew friendships.

“It was very good for the local business people; farmers wives would come in and buy their groceries, the hotels would do a roaring trade. I had a wag of a cousin he used to call it handshake day.”

Sources
We interviewed a couple of people: Mary Thornberry and my nan Zelda

Members of the Paynter and Green family gave us most of our information.

Sorell School

The Sorell School Motto:  “Respecting our past, creating our future.”

In 1821 Governor Macquarie chose the site to build Sorell School.

The first building at Sorell School was made of stone and was built where the secondary school library currently is. In November 1888 it was made into a school residence when the original part of the school was completed. The original stone building was used up until 1921 when it got demolished. The school had two rooms and in 1926 whilst the school was being reconstructed an iron roof was put on to replace the old one which was made of shingle.

When Sorell School first opened a total of 57 students were enrolled. Sorell School’s first Headmaster was Charles Edward Hippesley Cox. He was paid £20 a year along with a convict for a servant and he was fed a ration and a half of food. Throughout the years Sorell School has had a total of twenty-nine headmasters and principals.

Now we have so many students I am unsure on the number. We also have both a primary and secondary side. But a long time ago they would put all the people in the one class. They would give you different work depending on your age, but that’s all different now. Our school goes from Kinder – Gr 10 and then you can go on to college.

Fun Fact:
Before Sorell School’s bell was burnt in a fire, it was rang when a convict was escaping.

Interviews with teachers about memories of Sorell School

Mrs Hansen has been going to Sorell all her life and she has been teaching for 14 years so since 1994! She began in kinder at age 5. She lived in the area she was in Lewisham until she turned 11 and then they moved house. There was no school at all seeing that Dodges did not exist yet so Sorell School was built. They used the cane until Mrs Hansen was in grade six! She said that it hurt. Mrs Hansen loved school and her favourite subjects consist of Music, Cooking and Social Studies. She loved helping other people and that’s why she became a teacher but she didn’t decide on this career until uni. Before then she always wanted to become a journalist and wondered what her life might have been like if she had done that! She began by teaching grade 3 but as the years went on she progressed her way up to grade 12 before stopping and teaching grade 6/7. She is very proud of where she is today but she could have never done it without the help of her fellow teachers and family.

From Mr Morley we got some old yearbooks and we read through them and they were very interesting; how much it has changed in so many years. Fashion was a big difference since when we went to school. In the yearbooks they didn’t have much colour because of the cost, but there was a double page of the day that they had the sports carnival, similar to what we have today. Ye old shotput and tugga war all the things that make the day. The clothes so different to what people wear now, like as we call them ” Harry high pants ” being worn it made us laugh. Sorry if you used to wear them but i know you probably think the same. Also looking back to the leavers dinners, we still have them but they are just so different. But I must say some of the dresses they wore back then were beautiful! with the puffy sleeves and everything. The school back then was just one small house type building located where the school library is located now. It was white in colour and very small, but as the years went on we built and eventually this building became what we know it as today!

This report was made by two groups of students: Maddi and Emily, Jenna and Shannan

St George’s Church

Building the church:
St George’s Church provide a link with the past that we cannot ignore. British settlers began to farm in the area (originally know as Pittwater) in 1808. The first service at Sorell is recorded that the famous Reverend Robert Knopwood nicknamed Bobby at an enquiry conducted by Thomas Bigge. The first headquarters meeting was held in a barn. Many people attended, both free and convict as well as a few children. This was in 1820 in the following year the church was completed they decided to use it as a school house.  But in 1823 when the report was submitted it was found that the recommendation had been omitted.

Everyone who died at Sorell prior to 1823 were taken to the St Davids cemetery in Hobart. On the 7th of March 1823 the Reverend Samuel Marsden under the authority of the Archbishop of Canterbury  consecrated a parcel of land and set it aside for ever as a cemetery.
In the month of April of that year the Reverend Knopwood had retired after 19 years to live on his farm at Clarence Plains but he also continued to serve faithfully the church.

The St Georges Church commenced in 1826 at the request of the Reverend William Garrard to rebuild the Church because of its dangers. The builders were set off to do this job and the cost of it all amounted to 800 shillings and 108 shillings for the carpentry work. In 1827 the church was completed all the masonry and materials being furnished by convict labour. The ultimate price of the building was £1,450. The church was built for 600 people, having galleries on three sides to accommodate convicts on muster days.

The first churchwardens were Mr James Gordon P.M of Forcett House and Captain W.H Glover J.P of Horsecroft, Sorell. Mr Gordon and his wife are buried at St Georges cemetery. The year 1832 saw the departure of the Reverend Garrard and the arrival of the Reverend James Norman who served the parish faithfully and well for 35 years. A letter written to J.Morgan, Esq police magistrate dated 9th of April 1835 is continued in the parish file and is in a good site of preservation.

In 1879 the church was pronounced unsafe and the Presbyterians most graciously offered the use of their church in which Anglicans worshipped until 1884 when the new one was built on the same site. It was built to accommodate 215 people at the same time.  Reverend C.J Brammel was in charge of the parish. Services were held at Orielton, Wattle hill, Nugent, Kellevie, Bream Creek, Dunalley, Carlton, Forcett, Green Hill, Port Arthur,  Cascades, Impression Bay and Wedge bay. Mr Brammell resigned in 1894 after 26 years of service.

On Tuesday 23rd of October 1883 the foundation stone of the new church of St George at Sorell was laid by Bishop Sandford. The bishop celebrated assisted by the Reverend C.J Brammell and Canon Mason and Mr Woolnough who walked from Bellerive and arrived a little after 12:30pm. The proceedings commenced with the 100th psalm, the bishop then standing on the stone delivered an impressive address founded on the words (Do all in the name of lord Jesus). The sum of forty pounds was laid on the stone.

The land and its rectors:
The land grant for the Church consisted of four acres, three roods relating to the area generally know as St George’s Square. The Church is surrounded by Gordon Street, Fitzroy Place, Parsonage Place and Sorell Rivulet. There was also a further eight acres and eight perches surrounded by Pelham Street, Cole Street and the Sorell Rivulet. From speaking to a man with a lot of information, we found out that the Church used to own from the creek near Coles to the hall in Gordon Street.

The original parish took into Coal Valley and the East Coast as far as Bicheno. It was reduced by the formation of the Parishes of Richmond in 1835 and Buckland in 1846. From 1950 the rector also looked after the Parish of Richmond. The Longest serving Rector was the Reverend James Norman from 1832 until 1867.

Conserving the church:

The Church is made out of Stone, corrugated iron and has a gothic style according to some. In the last five years it has had conservation work done with the foundations, and replastering costing around $44,000. The condition is fair and the integrity is intact. The dimensions of the church are 34ft with a depth of 64ft and a height of 18ft.

St.Georges church has a high pitched roof, the windows are tall and multi-paned.  There are some structural difficulty and has bad stone deterioration around the base.

Interviewing Andrew Lake

At the moment there is one minister by the name of Andrew Lake. We interviewed Andrew Lake and found out this information:the busiest days of the year are Christmas and Easter, the church is always open on Christmas and Easter day. They have one church bell, which is rang so people know church is starting. The church has about two weddings and seven funerals a year. The decision to build a church probably came from Governor Arthur. He designed it to be big enough to fit everyone in the area including the convicts. The main feature of the church is probably the large Amber windows. There is more than one St. Georges church in Tasmania. Roughly 100 people are buried in the cemetery and about 100 in the columbarium. A Columbarium is place where ashes are placed. Andrew Lake has been the minister for four years.

This report was by two different groups of students: Maddi and Sam, Nicola and Bronte.

SOURCES:
Andrew Lake – Phone Interview- 9/7/08

I found the information in a book called ‘Sorell Heritage Study Site Inventory Volume 5’

There is a book called The Shocking history of Sorell by Robert Cox, Sorell Library has a copy for reference but no borrowing.

Sorell Tennis Club

 


These people are playing at Opening Day at Red courts at the Sorell Tennis Club.

In 1913 there was a public meeting held at Sorell Hall to form Sorell Tennis Club (Sorell Hall is now an antique store). A few years later in 1918 Sorell Tennis Club was opened by Col. Blacklow it is located at Pelham Street Sorell. There were two teams in the Sorell district; they were Sorell and Pembroke. The first President was Dr. Webster. The first Secretary was Mrs. Featherstone. The first Treasurer was Mrs. Peacock.

The clubroooms have gradually improved over the years from a small shed to a larger clubroom to the current two story building which over looks all the courts. There was one court and it was asphalt then later on it was covered with concrete. The second and third court was covered with red crushed gravel from St. Marys mines and brought in by rail and truck. These courts were later reconstructed in “no fines” concrete which allowed water to drain easily and very quickly (Opened in 1980). Two courts were added and laid in “super grass” acrylic fiber. Courts 1 and 2 were later reconstructed with super grass.

Teams from the Sorell Tennis Club play in a A.Y.C night competition against other teams from different clubs. Midweek ladies matches started in 1972. Children tennis lessons are at 3:45, 4:30 and 5:15 on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.

Pembroke Oval

Pembroke Oval was first made in 1883/1884 by the Sorell Sports Committee. This was previously the Sorell Racecourse Ground. The change rooms were built at the same time and they opened in 1884. The reason Pembroke Oval was built because they were looking for a place to play junior football and cricket.

Allan Lovell and Peter Connell were the leaders of the group that built the oval. After 10 years the Sorell Council took over the ownership of the oval off the Sorell Sports Committee.

The way they mowed the oval back then was they used a car towing a gang mower. They watered the ground by using heavy hoses and sprinklers as well. That was all done by Allan Lovell.

Allan invited Royce Hart who played for Richmond in the AFL to the oval for the opening and Allan still has the football signed by him. Some of the other people who play in the AFL now and play for Sorell are Tom Collier and Sam Iles.

In 1967 the oval was destroyed by bush fires and it had to be rebuilt. Later in 1983 the council encouraged the Sorell Football club to go to Pembroke Oval and they did. Sorell played in the league called the South East Districts Association.

What it looks like now:
The oval now looks great and people still play on it today. The sports that are played there now is football, cricket and little athletics. This year they have also built new cricket nets and they are building a ticket box and another gate to go in and out.