Residents take a look back in time

2019-04-23 06:00
Residents of Fish Hoek reminisce about the past of their beloved town.PHOTOs: Racine Edwardes

Residents of Fish Hoek reminisce about the past of their beloved town.PHOTOs: Racine Edwardes

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Fish Hoek residents attended an interesting talk where they were able to take a walk down memory lane, reminisce and see how development has changed the area over the years.

The Fish Hoek Valley Historical Association hosted one of their monthly talks at the Fish Hoek Civic Centre Library Hall earlier this month, where residents who formed part of the original Fish Hoek community were able to share their memories from more than 50 years ago.

Headed by Margaret Gundry of Fish Hoek Valley Museum and chairman of the association, Bev Freslich, the event was attended by almost 30 residents who viewed a presentation of historical pictures from the old town. Depicting families, pre-development mountain faces and showing a comparison of what was to what is; the pictures brought back fond memories for the residents who were clearly able to recognise the structures that stood before and what has replaced them to form the current Fish Hoek and surrounding areas.

Gundry shared stories of the old town with her audience. She was born in Fish Hoek and moved to Johannesburg about 50 years ago. It was only 18 months ago that she and her husband moved back to the area and she began looking for the people she once knew.

“I have this passion, now, to find the original residents of Fish Hoek. So I’ve been digging through all the documents to find names that tie up with addresses and names of houses, voters’ rolls, city directories and even stories that people have written to try trace the residents.”

All the information she’s obtained has been compiled and kept at the museum.

Residents were pleased by what they discovered regarding the history of their homes and shared their own stories with theirfellow residents.

“We have a house that we have rented out to tenants that was built in, I think, 1933 and it was owned by Harry De Stadler who was the mayor of Fish Hoek for years and years,” said Fish Hoek resident, Anne Booth.

“The whole De Stadler family and their descendants lived here. The house name is Harlu in 6th Avenue and that’s [a combination of] Harry and Lucy De Stadler, so that’s why I came to this talk – to see if I could find out more. There’s still an old cupboard in the kitchen that, when you open, says the first geyser was put in there in 1947.”

Gary Black, another resident, said: “I also live in an old house – a 1950s house. Myself and my neighbour probably live in some of the oldest houses in the area. Families have made homes here and we all know each other. Fish Hoek is a big family.”

Gundry encouraged all Fish Hoek residents to visit the museum and bring along their old photos and stories to add to the information she’s already collected.

The next meeting will be held on Thursday 9 May, where Mark Robinson will address audiences in attendance about the South Peninsula railways. V Call 083 701 0183 or email curator.fishhoekvalleymuseum@gmail.com for more information.

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