June 13 - 19, 2021: Issue 498


Manly cWA's inaugural Northern Beaches cookery & handicraft Competition in july

Manly CWA Mother's Day stall 2021 workers - CWA Manly's Mother's Day Stall in Manly excited a lot of interest from people looking for unique handmade gifts for "Mum" and many people enjoyed their famous scones at the Devonshire Tea raising money for the Cancer Council's Biggest Morning Tea program. 

The Manly branch of the Country Women’s Association will hold its inaugural Northern Beaches Cookery and Handicraft Competition at St Matthews Church, in Manly, on Saturday, July 17 as part of their annual Community Day.

All amateur bakers and crafters on the Northern Beaches are encouraged to come and share their joy in their creations, showcase their hard work and learn from their expert judges.

There are sections for primary school students, high school students and adults.

Critical dates:

  • Completed entry forms to be submitted by Friday, July 2, 2021
  • Entries to be submitted at 9am on Saturday, July 17, St Matthews Church, 1 Darley Road, Manly
  • Competition Day is Saturday, July 17 – judging to start at 10am

Interest in cookery and handicraft has boomed during COVID as people looked for a way to beat the isolation as well as create a more sustainable lifestyle and just have some fun.

''The Manly branch was established in June 1923 and recently celebrated our 98th birthday with a lunch at The Manly Club. Our branch has always been very active in the community raising funds not only for the CWA education and disaster relief programs but also to support the Royal Far West Home and, more recently, the Bush to Beach program and the Friends of Ivanhoe Park. '' Hannah Watterson, President of the CWA – Manly branch said this week

''CWA NSW will celebrate 100 years next year and Manly – one of the oldest branches in the state – will celebrate our centenary the following year. Plans are already underway and we hope to produce very special mementoes and hold a number of community events to mark the occasion.''

Below is the entry form – just simply right click on and ‘save as’ on your own device or PC to fill out.

Details of the sections are:

Schedule: Cookery

SECTION – ADULT (over 18)

1. Butter cakes – 20 cm round tins, cake should be presented as baked, not trimmed, may be iced, decorated or plain
a. For example orange, chocolate, vanilla, peach blossom

2. Fruit or vegetable loaf or bread – loaf tin approx. 24cm x 13cm
a. For example carrot and ginger loaf or banana bread

3. Gluten-free baking: cake, loaf or slice (4 pieces of slice) - tin sizes as for cakes and loaves
a. For example orange and almond cake, filled meringues

4. Traditional sponge – 2 x 20cm round tins, uniced, no dusting with icing sugar, filled with a red jam

5. Shortbread biscuits x 4 pieces or one full round

6. Preserves – 250 ml jars; no rust on lid; no commercial logos or labels
a. For example tomato relish, fruit chutney, pickles, marmalade, jam


  1. Cupcakes x 4 – decorated or iced
  2. Gluten-free baking (4 pieces if a slice, biscuits or small bake)
  3. Biscuits x 4 – decorated or plain
  4. Preserves – 250 ml jar; sauce, chutney, pickle or jam


  1. Cupcakes x 4 – decorated or iced
  2. Gluten-free baking (4 pieces if a slice, biscuits or small bake)
  3. Biscuits x 4 – decorated or plain

Schedule: Handicraft


1. Artwork – maximum size 60cm x 60cm
a. Using any combination of materials and media

2. Crotchet - any ply yarn – natural or non-natural yarn, or cotton
a. For example any garment or accessory for an adult, child or baby
b. Rug – no larger than 100cm by 120cm

3. Knitting – any ply yarn - natural or non-natural yarn, or cotton
a. For example any garment or accessory for an adult, child or baby
b. Rug – no larger than 100cm by 120cm

4. Sewing – Made from any fibre
a. For example any garment or accessory for an adult, child or baby
b. Rug – patchwork or quilting – no larger than 100cm by 120cm.

5. Scrap booking, cardmaking, quilling and collage - Using any combination of materials/ media – maximum size 30cm X 40cm

6. Needlework – Tapestry, cross stitch, embroidery, beading - Using any combination of materials/ mediums – maximum size 60xm X 60cm


Please read carefully

  • This Contest is conducted by the Manly branch of the Country Women’s Association of New South Wales.
  • The Contest is open to amateur bakers and crafters who live or work in the Northern Beaches
  • Entry fee is $2 per item and must be paid in advance or when entries are submitted
  • Entries must be accompanied by a completed entry form
  • Cookery entries must be accompanied by a list of ingredients
  • No package mixtures are to be used
  • Handicraft entries must be accompanied by details of the materials used
  • Younger competitors may enter the Adult sections but will be judged in line with adult competitors
  • Entries can be donated to CWA Manly or be collected by competitors between 2pm and 3pm on competition day
  • The judges’ decisions are absolutely final and not to be questioned or discussed with the judges.
  • Winners will be acknowledged

Critical dates:

a. Deadline for entries – Friday, July 2, 2021 - email manlycwa@yahoo.com or post to 3/75-76 West Esplanade, Manly NSW 2095

b. Submission of entries – 9am, Saturday, July 17, 2021 at the Function Room, St Matthews Church, 1 Darley Road, Manly NSW 2095

c. Winners announced - Saturday, July 17, 2021

Entries to be collected between 2pm and 3pm, July 17, if not being donated to Manly CWA

Proceeds from the competitions will go to CWA fundraising programs and the Manly Royal Far West Home. 

Entry form below;

Some Background - More during CWA Manly Branchs' 100th Year Celebrations

The Country Women's Association of New South Wales, was formed at the Bushwomen's Conference held in conjunction with the Royal Agricultural Show in Sydney in April 1922. This conference was initiated by Dr Richard Arthur, MP for North Sydney, and Miss Florence Gordon, who ran the Home Page of the Stock and Station Journal and penned the original Bushwomens Union articles.

Florence would later live at Ocean House/ Combers Newport and was living there in 1928 when she passed away. Florence Mary White Gordon had actually been a founder of a newspaper at Tamworth and taught music there from 1910. Florence was born in Tasmania and her mother signed her name with a ‘x’ mark on the marriage certificate – her parents married in 1851. One article found on a farewell for her in May 1918, when she was leaving Tamworth to come to Sydney, presumably to take up her work as 'Urbania' on the Stock and Station Journal, praised her 'literary style and intellectuality'

Mr. Arthur had been urging the need to improve conditions for rural women since 1904. Florence had had published a plan for a 'Country Women's Union of Help' in 1921 which received a flood of support from her readers. 

These women were fighting isolation and a lack of health facilities. The members worked tirelessly to set up baby health care centres, fund bush nurses, build and staff maternity wards, hospitals, schools, rest homes, seaside and mountain holiday cottages - and much more. The women of the CWA have been initiators, fighters and lobbyists. They have made localities into communities by providing social activities and educational, recreational and medical facilities.

Country Women's Association


Although the first conference of the Bushwomen is only just over, no time is being lost by the Country Women's Association in getting to work. There is much to do, and there is nothing like an early beginning. 

As readers already know, a deputation from the Association waited on the Minister for Railways, Sir Thos. Henley, and asked for a number of things — including more convenient excursions for women and children, second class sleepers, and better arrangements for the getting of refreshments en route. Speakers also stressed the fact that rail fares far out are becoming prohibitive. Sir Thomas Henley was sympathetic, and there is good reason, to believe that the reforms suggested by the Association will come about. 


Mrs. Hugh Munro, the President of the Association, has been in touch, with the Minister for Lands, Mr. Wearne, with a view to securing land for seaside camps. The idea is to provide these camps by the seaside for outback women and children, so that they will be able to get accommodation free. The matter of accommodation is a big item to the outback settler's family when they are dreaming of a holiday by the seaside! 

Mrs. Munro is planning to secure land somewhere on the North Coast, probably near the Clarence River, for one camp, land on the South Coast, probably at' Jervis Bay, for another camp, and land about Sydney for the third camp. For awhile' probably only the Sydney camp would be of much service, because, as things are, all rail-roads lead to Sydney. 

Later on, the other camps will be used — especially when decentralisation comes.  It is suggested that a camp' site could be obtained at Griffith Park, near Collaroy, a few miles north of Manly. This would be an excellent site because there are one hundred and seventy acres of land there and both water and gas are laid on. 

On one side there is Dee Why Lagoon, on the other side is the splendid Collaroy Beach, and in front is the health-giving Pacific. Probably this is the best site for the purpose in the metropolitan area. 

Mrs. Munro hopes that the camp here will be ready for next summer. What a Godsend it would be to the tired bush mother and her children ! 


Another matter that the Association is attending to at once is outback nursing, and the registration, of maternity nurses. Mrs. Munro has been informed that a bill has already been drafted for the compulsory registration of midwives and the hope is that this will go through early. Better provision for bush nursing is also desired. It is hope, by working in conjunction with the Children's Welfare Association, to arrange for the sending of capable teachers to country towns to spread instructions in the feeding and general care of children. Infant mortality is at least as high in the country as it is in the city in spite of the fact that disease is more prevalent in the city. 

More country than city mothers die in child birth, owing to the lack of proper ; attention in the country ! The Country Women's Association will strive to get better attention for the bush mothers and their children. 

It is hoped to secure an annex department to each country hospital, where young children, who are not ill, can be kept and properly looked after while the mothers are ill. it is also hoped that provision will be made in the country towns for the keeping of ambulances, that in the case of sickness or emergency will go out into the country and fetch the patients in — at present one of the great difficulties often lies in getting the patient into town. 

These are just a few of the matters that are receiving the immediate attention of the Association. It is hoped that thousands of bush women will join the Association, and so make it a great factor for good, in the lives of the bush community. 

If you are interested— and if you are a bush woman surely you are - please write for further particulars to the Secretary Country Women's Association, c/o '. Stock and Station Journal,' 17 Castlereagh Street, Sydney. 

As a postscript it may be added that the Country Women's Association is wholly made up of country women. Women living min the city whose main income is drawn from the country are eligible for membership. This is an association of country- women run by country women for country women. Country Women's Association (1922, May 5). The Sydney Stock and Station Journal (NSW : 1896 - 1924), p. 4. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article125388447 

A few local notes on the commencement and early works of our local branch include a number of firsts:


Mrs. Cecil Tindale, of Muswellbrook, called a drawing-room meeting at her flat at ‘’Dungowan" Manly, yesterday afternoon, to discuss the formation of a sub-branch of the Country Women's Association at Manly. 

Mrs. James Ashton (president of the Cumberland branch) explained the aims of the association and the particular work it was hoped, that Manly would undertake, which was a special interest in the seaside camps, the first of which would be opened in the summer. 

Among those who attended the meeting were Mesdames Earle Page, Keirle (Mayoress of Manly), Osbourne-England, H. C. M'Intyre, R. W. Weaver, Ness, Dunn, G. Wolford, Marion Irvine, and Miss Barrett. MANLY COUNTRY WOMEN (1923, May 31). The Daily Telegraph (Sydney, NSW : 1883 - 1930), p. 3. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article245821578 

Mrs 'Cecil' Tindale was actually Claire nee York, a native of Singleton and Muswellbrook where her father was a horse specialist. The Tindales had been coming to Manly for years for holidays. They lost their only son, Dallas Ambrose, in France 1918 during WWI. Mrs. Claire Tindale had been among those doing 'war work' though:

TO SMOKERS. (1914, December 5). The Muswellbrook Chronicle (NSW : 1898 - 1955), p. 2. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article107872855 

The Manly CWA was officially formed in June 1923:


At the Dungowan Cafe, Manly, a meeting convened by the Mayoress of Manly (Mrs. A. T. Keirle) formed a sub-branch of the Country Women's Association. Amongst those present were Mrs. James Ashton, O.B.E. (president or the Cumberland branch), Mrs. N. C. M'Intyre (hon. treasurer). Miss Wurby (hon. secretary), Mrs. Irvine (organising secretary), Mrs. Cecil Tindale, Mrs. Osborne (England), und Mr. it. D. Weaver. M.L. A. 

The following officers were .elected for the Manly branch: — Patroness. Mrs. A. T. Keirlo (Mayoress); president, Mrs. C Tindale; vice-presidents. Mrs. Osborne and Mrs. H. D. Weaver: hon. treasurer, Mrs. Ness; Hon. secretary, Miss Martin; committee. Mesdames Dunn, Welford, Henderson. Chapman, Minnett, Forbes, Young. Davis, and Robertson. A musical programme was contributed to by Misses Lily Laing, Freudenstein, Granger, Beard, and Bell. COUNTRY WOMEN'S ASSOCIATION (1923, June 15). The Daily Telegraph (Sydney, NSW : 1883 - 1930), p. 5. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article245818540 


To the Manly Sub.-Branch of the Country Women's Association belongs the credit of firing the first shot for the Seaside Homes Fund in the metropolitan area! In the charmingly arranged at Dungowan Café on Tuesday evening,, there was a fine attendance, and dancing was kept up with great spirit. To- the great regret of all, the President Mrs. Tindale, was prevented by illness from being present, but the Vice-Presidents, Hon. Treas. and Hon. Sec. were untiring in their efforts to see to the enjoyment of all. There is a splendid jazz, band at Dungowan, and the system of lighting is both pretty and novel, and under the variegated rays the pretty frocks looked most effective. Mrs. Osborne England wore a French frock of silver grey brocade and silver, and Mrs. Nest was in black satin, relieved with gold. Miss Martin chose a graceful frock of lettuce green, draped and finished with choux of the satin. Mrs. Ross was in deep crimson charmante, the long waist-line defined by gauging. MANLY POLO DANCE. (1923, July 10). The Sydney Stock and Station Journal (NSW : 1896 - 1924), p. 2. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article128177991 

Country Women's Association.
Our Manly President.

Friends of the president of the Manly sub-branch of the Country Women's Association will hear with pleasure of the continued improvement of their president, Mrs. Cecil Tindale, who, by the way, points out that she does not come from the Inverell district, but from Sunnyside, Bylong, in the Rylstone district, her husband being the son of the late Wm. Tindale, of Sunnyside, who was one of the sturdy pioneers in Australia. 

Dame Alice Chisholm, who has taken up the presidency of the Cumberland branch, is a woman known to thousands of diggers in Egypt as 'Mother Chisholm.' She it was who did such Trojan service with Miss McPhillamy in the Egyptian canteens, and fed so many men who otherwise, one feels, would often have gone hungry in their weary travels from one point to another of the battle-line. There are not many mothers in this State but who have heard of Dame Alice from their sons. Country Women's Association. (1923, August 10). The Sydney Stock and Station Journal (NSW : 1896 - 1924), p. 7 (Magazine STOCK & STATION JOURNAL). Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article128176719 


Mrs. C. Tindale invited a number of girls to meet her at Dungowan, Manly, on Saturday afternoon to discuss forming an auxiliary committee for the Manly branch of the Country Women's Association. A younger set committee was formed. Mrs. Tindale was elected president; Mrs. Harold Montague and Miss Peterswald, vice-presidents; Miss Marcia Martin, hon. secretary; Miss Pritchard, assistant hon. secretary; Miss Lander, treasurer; executive, Misses P. Orr, D, Coggins, M. Hobson, P. Williams, r, Bowerman, S. Sims, K. Carder. N. Harris, B. Davies, Y. Wilson, M. Melrose, I, Helrose, G, Henderson. I. Rives, B. Maloney, and Mrs. Graham. MANLY C.W.A. (1923, November 20). The Daily Telegraph (Sydney, NSW : 1883 - 1930), p. 5. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article245992926 

Among these women the second Manly president Jessica Lee,(nee Mawdsley; not seemingly related to Mawdsley family then at Manly – later Osborne-England by second marriage) is very interesting. She came out to Victoria in 1912 with her family; all girls and only 5 surviving of 10 – her mother died in the country in 1914 from septicaemia – possibly from a miscarriage it seems. She married in 1915, still a teenager – her husband was a widower with a little girl already – her husband than died after being kicked by a horse at Tenterfield the next year, 1916 – she had a son by him by then.

Jessica was involved in setting up a respite farm for WWI soldiers on the Hawkesbury and doing fundraising for this at Mosman and at ‘Crows Nest’ the original home that gave its name to the suburb. In 1922 she married Wilbert Osbert England – of the architectural firm Rowe and England, which also had a design for St Matthews in Manly Corso in 1926 and designed the first ‘seaside homes’ for the CWA. Unfortunately Wilbert seemed to be suffering from PTSD after serving in WWI and became one of those victims that lost their  life in the decade after they came home – dying a few years after they divorced. The papers of 1919 to mid 1930's are littered with reports of men going off the rails. Jessica ended up going back to England in 1934 to live with her first husband’s sister in law in Cornwall, so only here for 22 years. However, her work for others filled those years, with a primary focus on affordable health for women in the city and nurses in the bush, along with books. Her other passion was finding a place for English young men trying to make a life in Australia after WWI. 

She reverted to ‘Mrs. Jessica Lee’ after the divorce as Wilbert seemed to have money problems – spending too much - and, as stated in some reports, due to her own business interests.  An image from one article found of Jessica from:

AT "TRESCO," Elizabeth Bay, committee meeting of Anzac Fellowship of Women, yesterday. — Mrs. Alec. Copeland, Mrs. Jessica Lee, Mrs. J. B. Stevenson. MONGOOSE AND COBRA LOCKED IN EMBRACE OF DEATH (1930, February 7). Daily Pictorial (Sydney, NSW : 1930 - 1931), p. 24. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article246112100 

There’s a lot else of course – and a great many ‘feminists’ and WWI workers, Red Cross and other works among the founding members in the years prior to May and June 1923 – and also among those who went to look at Bilgola/Newport ridge as a possible first site for a seaside home – that and was later sold (Crown Land). The first seaside home was 'Keera' at Dee Why, named after Keera Station, Bingara, the family home of Grace (nee Gordon) Munro's husband's family home, was available for women and children from mid January 1924 although not officially opened until July of that year. 



So that the country women who toil further inland may have a holiday by the sea there is a proposal afoot to establish for them a camp between Newport Beach and Dalley's cottage, which belonged to the late Colonel Watt.

Mr. Wearne, Minister for Lands, visited the proposed site yesterday, accompanied by Dr. Arthur, M.L.A., and members of the Country Women's Association. The Crown owns 65 acres of land in the vicinity, and it is thought that the Minister will be willing to grant so much as is requisite to the scheme, at a nominal rental. There is some, questioning as to whether or not it is too far from the city, however. The Minister expressed himself as cordial towards the project. It has been arranged that members of the association shall interview him further on the subject at 2 p.m. on Wednesday. COUNTRY WOMEN (1923, September 24). The Daily Telegraph (Sydney, NSW : 1883 - 1930), p. 4. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article246070345


On Sunday several members of the Country Women's Association, including Dame Alice Chisholm, Mesdames Hazlett, H. C. McIntyre, Kierie, Tindal, Arding Thomas, Osborne, E. Nyland, Fraser-Clark, Nest, Carpenter, Weaver, Chapman, Henderson, and Miss Warby Lugsdon, and many others representing the Cumberland branch, and the Manly and Mosman sub-branches of the association, paid a visit to the proposed site of the first seaside camp. Mr. W. B. Wearne, M.L.A. (Minister for Lands), also accompanied the party, as the area proposed belongs to the Crown. It is at Bilgola Bay, just north of Newport, and is one of the most beautiful situations Imaginable.

Mr. Wearne made the very generous offer of an area of about 30 acres, including the beach frontage, to the association. It was considered by some members that the site was too far from Sydney, but in view of the impossibility of getting a sufficient area nearer town, and the ideal character of the site, which would be reserved for all time for the benefit of the people out back, there was a general feeling that Mr. Wearne, offer should be accepted at once. 

The Minister Invited the ladies present to attend at the Lands Department on Wednesday, at 2 p.m., when he would be in a position to Inform them if there were any other areas of Crown lands on the coast near Sydney which would be suitable for camp purposes. WOMEN'S COLUMN. SEASIDE CAMP. (1923, September 26). The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 - 1954), p. 9. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article16095915


On the assumption that the better the day the better the deed, Dame Alice Chisholm accompanied by representatives of the central executive of the Country Women's Association, and by a fine representative from her own branch and the sub-branches of Manly and Mosman, went down to Bilgoola to inspect the site for the suggested seaside home. 

There they were met by Mr. Wearne, Mr. and Mrs. Weaver, Dr. Richard Arthur and other representative people, and the idea was thoroughly gone into. The general impression seems to have been that the site, while in itself most lovely, was too difficult of access to serve the purpose, and so after a picnic lunch and a gipsy tea the company returned to town, having heard Mr. Weaver upon the subject, and having accepted an invitation from that gentleman to meet him at the Lands Office on Wednesday afternoon, at 2 p.m., when he would place before them all particulars of land available at Narrabeen, Collaroy, Manly and Maroubra. The ladies and gentlemen present express themselves as most grateful for the helpfulness, courtesy and keen personal interest evinced by the Minister. WOMEN IN THE COUNTRY AND THE CITY (1923, September 28). The Sydney Stock and Station Journal (NSW : 1896 - 1924), p. 1 (STOCK & STATION JOURNAL Magazine Section). Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article128178558


One of the most practical movements yet undertaken with the object of brightening the lives of the poor of the outback stands to the credit of the Country Women's Association. This is a scheme to erect cosy cottages on Government grand land so that every year they may be occupied for a few weeks by country families free of rent. A deputation, introduced by Mrs. H. C. Mclntyre, treasurer of the Association, and Dr. Arthur, waited on the Minister for Lands, Mr. Wearne, on Wednesday, made representations to him, and fully outlined the proposals. 

The Minister granted three acres of Crown land at Griffiths Park, near Palm Beach, and the Association Intends to erect about six little homes on the ground, hoping in the meantime for aid from patriotic and humanely-principled men  and women in the swelling of the funds for so laudable an object. A start will be made in the work of clearing the ground within a few weeks. The Voluntary Workers will assist. 

The Association intends to establish similar holiday settlements at various resorts such as Coff's Harbor. It is endeavoring also to secure the grant of an additional 60 acres at Newport, nearby the residence of the late Lieut.-Colonel Oswald Watt. On this site, it, it proposed to erect homes to accommodate 60 families. 

Representations are also to be made to the Railway Commissioners for a reduction in fares from the country to the several resorts. Lady Edgeworth David has suggested to the Association that the homes should be named in memory of the pioneer women of the outback — women who have done equally as much for the country as the men. The suggestion will be adopted. COUNTRY WOMEN'S ASSOCIATION SECURES CROWN LAND FOR HOLIDAY HOMES (1923, September 30). Sunday Times (Sydney, NSW : 1895 - 1930), p. 1. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article120536628


The Country Women have now 61 branches spread all over the State. The. year just closed has brought forth the remarkable fact that it is possible for three thousand women to bind themselves together in the small space of 21 months, and work harmoniously (despite the general bad character given them, by men, for quarrelling) I for the good of their fellow-women, j without a. single ruffle upon the waters of the Association stream. Money ' has been collected, great undertakings brought off— like the opening of Keera House and the cottage at Corrimal— big balls engineered, and still there is no rift, within the lute. Could there be any more convincing evidence of the great need that existed for the Association, and its practical ideals.

Rules and Tariff for Keera House, the Seaside Holiday Home of the Country Women's Association at Dee Why.

The tariff shall be: — £1 per week for adults over 16 years ; 10/- per week for children from 10 to 16 years; 5/per week for children from 3 to 10 years. Children under 3 years free. Payable in advance to the Matron. 


1. Visitors to keep their rooms clean and tidy, and to make their beds. 2. No visitors or children allowed in pantry or kitchen, except by special permission. 3. Laundry to be used only by permission, and to be kept perfectly clean. 4. Visitors, particularly children, are not to come into the house in their wet bathing suits, but to take them off in the room provided for the purpose. 5. Only one colored towel to be taken to the beach. 6. Visitors to be responsible for their breakages. 7. Each mother to be responsible for the safety of her children while she is in residence at the Home. 8. House linen will be handed out by the Matron, and must be signed for by the mother of the family in a book to be kept for the purpose. The same number of articles must be handed back in good condition before the family leaves. 9. Visitors only on one afternoon a week to inmates. Breakfast 8 a.m. Dinner 12 noon Afternoon Tea 3.30 p.m. Tea 6 p.m. Applicants to be received into the Home should be addressed to the Hon. Secretary, 17 Castlereagh St., Sydney, or to the nearest Branch Secretary. Applicants may stay three weeks. For Women in the Country & City in NSW (1924, January 18). The Sydney Stock and Station Journal (NSW : 1896 - 1924), p. 5. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article128177685 


First Seaside Home of Country Women’s Association of N.S.W.), erected at Dee-Why, near Sydney. OUR COUNTRY HOMES. (1924, March 14). Farmers' Advocate (Melbourne, Vic. : 1917 - 1924), p. 13. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article223608914 

A wing was added in 1926 and the grounds expanded - a 1937 description provides:



Keera House, the C.W.A. Hostel for country women and children at Dee Why, was named after the station home of Mrs. Hugh Munro, of Bingara, whose name is inseparably connected with that of the Country Women's Association.

Keera House is within a short distance of the beach and stands in extensive grounds. There are several buildings to accommodate the women and children who come from all over the State to partake of its hospitality, and a big dining room caters for everyone on the family group system. Each family has its own table, and as each family also has its own room, there is none of the usual boarding house or hostel atmosphere and things are made much happier and homelier for the people front the outback. 

The home is under the able super vision, of Matron Booth, who has as chief assistant Miss McCrae, and both ladies are very popular with visitors owing to the friendly interest and concern for the happiness and com fort of all at Keera House. The home has accommodation for eighty mothers and children, and at the present time it is reported that it is fully taxed, there being about fifty children and thirty mothers in residence. 

For a period of three weeks tired mothers and their children can live by the seaside under ideal conditions and at rates which are remark ably low. The food is excellent and the rooms are so well equipped with all necessities that it is a real plea sure for women from the country districts to holiday there. The C.W.A. has other hostels at Bar Beach (Newcastle) and Sawtell (North Coast), and all are run on the same excellent lines as Keera House, which is becoming so increasingly popular that it will probably be only a short time before it is found necessary to extend the accommodation. 

Well kept lawns and attractive gardens add to the beauty of Keera House, and country women with large families who desire an enjoyable holiday by the seaside should communicate with the secretary of the nearest C.W.A. branch and obtain full particulars. KEERA HOUSE. (1937, January 14). North West Champion (Moree, NSW : 1915 - 1954), p. 3. Retrieved from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article178290228 

In 1955 a new Keera was opened in Manly itself:


TURNING THE KEY: The key. was turned and the home was officially opened by Mrs. Colin Venn, chairman of the Keera House Committee for the vast 30 years. The Mayoress of Manly, Mrs. M. Paine, and the State president. Mrs. W. H. Cullen, watch the ceremony.

EARLY ARRIVALS: Many C.W.A. women arrived Keera House in Manly to get a clear view of the chairs. During the opening, more than 300 women the key of the arrived well ahead of time and gathered outside the new the official opening . Some came equipped with folding  chairs  women grouped in this spot to watch Mrs. Colin Venn turn of the new home.

OLD FRIENDS: Miss D. Wilson, president of the Trangie branch, greets an old friend, Mrs. S. C. Seaman, from the Hargraves branch of the Mudgee-Coolah group. Miss Nancy Foskett, Department of Agriculture, looks on with Mrs. C. H. Faggan, Tamworth, and Mrs. M. Dempsey, patron of the Mendoran branch of the Mudgee-Coolah group.

BUYING TICKETS: Miss Madeleine Grant, C.W.A. Younger Set State leader, sells tickets to Mrs. H. C. Mclntyre, Inverell, and Mrs. Clement Chapman, wife of the honorary doctor to Keera House:

WELCOME TO MAYOR: Mrs. W. H. Cullen, State welcomes Mrs. M. Paine and Alderman Paine, the May( opening of Keera, the new C.W.A. seaside State president of the C.W.A., Mayor of Manly, to the official seaside home at Manly.

On Saturday afternoon Mrs. Colin Venn opened the new Keera House at the Sydney seaside suburb of Manly. The new Keera has been bought and converted by the Country Women's Association of N.S.W. to replace their old home at Dee Why.

On Saturday afternoon the new home was over-run by country and metropolitan members of the Association who had their first chance of inspecting it. The low, white building with its newly painted yellow and black pillars was rigged with flags for the opening and the spacious halls and afternoon tea rooms were filled with flowers. The home has comfortable accommodation for 86, with lounges and a spacious, airy dining room. One family moved in after the ceremony on Saturday and three more the next day. The Association has even had one enquiry from a member at Alice Springs who wants to bring her family to Sydney for the school holidays. Unlike the old Keera; husbands will be allowed to stay, too.

C.W.A. past vice-president and second State president, Mrs. A. J. Studdy (centre), with Mrs. W. A. Henderson, Manly branch, and Mrs. R. V. Hole, Coonamble. 

ENGLISH VISITOR: Newly arrived from the Women's Institute of England is Mrs. H. F. Gray, who is seen here discussing the new Keera House with the general secretary of C.W.A., Miss Margaret McCallum.

DINING ROOM: A corner view of the attractive dining room with its seating room for 86 guests. After the official opening, afternoon tea was served in this room for the official party and later for guests. THE NEW KEERA (1955, May 13). The Farmer and Settler (Sydney, NSW : 1906 - 1955), p. 24. Retrieved, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article117409652 

More in May 2023. 

In the meantime - get baking, making jam and crafty!

Manly CWA members at Bush to Beach 2020  images By Maryan Heffernan, Community Photography