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Reeves Plains Coursing

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Fast Facts
Type of organisation: Sporting
Also known as: Germanton Coursing, Red Banks Coursing


Town or locality: Reeves Plains
Date established: 1907
Ceased operation: 1965
Business or purpose: Sport
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Greyhound coursing was well in favour in the Redbanks district with the early settlers who may have brought their dogs with them on the ships. The first official cards that can be found were printed by the Bunyip Press, Gawler for the Germantown (Germanton) club in 1907. The 18 hounds listed with pedigrees and owners took two days to run off. The draw beforehand would have most probably taken place in Syd Fischer's barn. Mr W. Wasley was the chairman, Mr J. McCord secretary and Mr E. Good judge.

The Reeves Plains club began in 1908 as the `Germanton Coursing Club.' The name was changed at a meeting held on 25 February 1910 to the `Reeves Plains Coursing Club.' The first meeting was run on 17 July 1908 and was to be a 32 dog stake - 24 nominations were received. The first chairman was Mr. W. Wasley of Korunye and the slipper for this meeting was Mr.J.T. Pratt of Korunye.Later In 1908 the Germanton coursing again had a 24 dog stake and needed two days to conduct the meeting. Mr J. H. Schneider was the president and Mr J. T Pratt was the slipper on both occasions and Mr S. C. Fischer's bitch Liberty won the stake and a prize. These Germans and friends enjoyed their-coursing and took part in all meetings about. The Germanton coursing was still active in 1914 and about this time Mr Kevin and Mr. Vin Hall declared all shooting on their property would be stopped, so that the hares would breed and stay on the property.

Mr.M.H.Richter was elected secretary and treasurer in 1911 and continued holding those offices until the winding up of the club in July 1965.The largest stakes run by the club were 96 dogs run during the mid 1940s.

The "Waterloo Cup" was the most important event on the South Australian coursing calendar and over the years had been run at Buckland Park, Clare, Burra, Angas Plains and in later years at Langhorne's Creek.

In 1942 the event was suspended and in 1943 the Reeves Plains enthusiastic Coursing Club members asked permission from the S.A. Coursing Club to hold the event. This they then did in 1943, 1944, 1945 and 1946. The highlight year being 1946 when his Excellency the Governor of South Australia Sir Willoughby Norrie attended the meeting at Reeves Plains.

In 1943 Mr Martin Richter was secretary of the club and judged the classic, and Mr Syd Verner acted as slipper,

Betting was permissable and seven or eight bookmakers were present to accept wagers on the dogs.

The participants were engaged in the following activities.

Two dogs, one with a red collar and one with a white collar, were spring-released by a slipper walking when the hare had a start of about 15 yards; the judge was mounted on a good horse that could jump fences if required. The points according to the degree of superiority shown: the go by - two points or if gained on the outer circle, three points; the turn - one point; the wrench - half a point; the kill - two points or in a descending scale, in proportion to merit displayed in that kill; the trip - one point. The judge's duty wasn't an easy one as he had to tabulate the points mentally and hoist the appropriate flag at the conclusion of the course.

Related Articles

Sources

  • "Life around the Light" a history of the District Council of Mallala written in 1985
  • Reeves Plains Coursing Club minute books
  • Mr Reg Jenkin - formerly of Reeves Plains
  • Mr Tom Irish of Mallala - description of the activities of the participants
  • Photographs courtesy of Mrs Jean Burt nee Hall.
Coursing  L.Kevin Hall, Reg Manning, ADC to Governor, Sir Willoughby Norrie, Hedley Pratt, Cliff George,Varley Hancock, Joan Richter at the  Waterloo Cup, Reeves Plains.
Coursing L.Kevin Hall, Reg Manning, ADC to Governor, Sir Willoughby Norrie, Hedley Pratt, Cliff George,Varley Hancock, Joan Richter at the Waterloo Cup, Reeves Plains.
The Waterloo Cup luncheon was held in Kevin Hall's shed.  Jean Hall and Mrs Maryanne Hall, June 1946
The Waterloo Cup luncheon was held in Kevin Hall's shed. Jean Hall and Mrs Maryanne Hall, June 1946
Coursing Kevin Hall of Red Banks
Coursing Kevin Hall of Red Banks
Sir Willoughby Norrie arriving for the Waterloo Cup coursing event at  Redbanks - 1946.
Sir Willoughby Norrie arriving for the Waterloo Cup coursing event at Redbanks - 1946.
Brochure cover Waterloo Cup  1945
Brochure cover Waterloo Cup 1945
Spectators watching the "Waterloo Cup" coursing event at Reeves Plains in 1943.
Spectators watching the "Waterloo Cup" coursing event at Reeves Plains in 1943.


Memories of Reeves Plains Coursing

Mr Reg Jenkin states that in 1945 the Coursing judge was Mr Grayden Richter of Reeves Plains and the Slipper was Mr Tom Irish of Mallala. Luncheons were provided by the Redbanks Progress Association in Mr Vincent Hall's barn and the proceeds donated to the Fighting Forces Comfort Fund.

From the Advertiser June 1943 "The first pair of dogs must be in slips at Leo Jenkin's corner 1 mile south of Redbanks by 8.00 am."

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