|Articles on this page with permission from GREG WANE, are taken from the Barwon Heads,Ocean Grove, and Wallington news .||Issn 13290371|
Published by Whistler Publishing
PO. Box 358, Ocean Grove
Editor Greg Wayne
Carol and Don swap farm life for Barwon Heads
by Gillian Gubbins
LIFETIME country dwellers, Carol and Don Richardson, who for 35 years managed and part-owned the Omen cattle station 'Cobungra', are delighted with their decision to retire to Barwon Heads.
The initial concept for the move was formed four years ago, while enjoying one of their regular holidays in the area, they noticed two adjacent blocks of land for sale in Hopgood Place. The decision to purchase the land then and there was unanimous as both Carol and Don had agreed that after a lifetime of living amongst wide acres, to have space around their new home was an essential priority.
There were three other requisites that governed the 'space factor' for the Richardson's new home. First, the new house must be large enough to accommodate their three adult children, Sarah, jock and Mark and their families and friends for holidays.
Second, the area allotted for the garden must be spacious enough for Carol to utilise her expertise and enthusiasm in landscape gardening. Thirdly, to realise Don's wish that they should have a lap pool not only for its practical use but also to complement the house and garden.
Thanks to the couple's foresight, architect Victoria Hamers' innovative design and Point Lonsdale builder Pat O'Dowd's building skills, number 22 Hopgood Place is all that the Richardsons had hoped for.
Carol cannot remember exactly when she met Don - this interesting man was always there, at Western District parties, cattle sales and agricultural functions.
They married in Melbourne in 1967 following Carol's trip overseas and her three year Bachelor of Science course at Melbourne University. Carol worked for more than two years as a research assistant in immunology at the Walter and Eliza Institute. Their early days of marriage were spent at 'Cobungra', Omeo where their three children were born. It was also here that Carol first became involved in what, today, is one of her major interests, the Australian Red Cross.
Aware that the children of North Omeo required an interest outside the school curriculum, she began a branch of the junior Red Cross which she supervised while encouraging the children to take an interest in helping others less fortunate than themselves.
In 1974, Carol and Don moved to Coleraine in the Western District, when they purchased the property previously owned by Carol's family and for a number of years, Don managed this property in conjunction with his Omeo interests. Here again Carol enjoyed working for the Red Cross and was appointed regional co- ordinator of Red Cross Youth, spending much time travelling the extensive Hamilton district.
In 1990 the Richardsons after selling the Coleraine property, purchased land at Berrigan in New South Wales for the purpose of fattening cattle and it was here that Carol successfully undertook the challenge of converting a small and unbecoming cottage amid unwieldy growth into a practical and picturesque home and garden.
Returning to live at 'Cobungra' for the two and a half years before moving to Barwon Heads, Carol again became involved with the district Red Cross. Once settled on the Bellarine Peninsula, Carol immediately agreed to accept the position as president of the Barwon Heads Red Cross - where already her past experience and dedication to the movement has proved beneficial to the local unit.