Martyn Smith, writing about Wesley College

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CHUM CREEK'S FORTIETH
(March, 1993, for 'The Lion' magazine)

The fortieth anniversary of the first Form Camp held at Chum Creek was celebrated at the camp on a wet Wednesday early in November last year. 

Guest of Honour was A. R. (Dick) Milne, who attended that historic first camp as the late Jack Rush's assistant.  Form 3D, with Jack as Form Master, spent ten days at Chum Creek from 3rd November, 1952, thereby paving the way for the regular camping program which started in 1953. 

Appropriately, Glen Waverley Homeroom, Year 7 Rush, was resident at the camp exactly forty years later and joined in the celebrations. These commenced on the first night with a visit by Philip and Robert Rush, Jack's OW sons, both of whom had accompanied their father to Chum Creek in 1952. 

In inimitable Rush style, they entertained the students with wonderful tales of Wesley camping in the 'forties and early 'fifties and led a tramp around the Camp fondly pointing out well-remembered features. This was a marvellous evening, nicely spiced with a bagful of memorabilia which Philip gleefully revealed to his fascinated audience. 

Remembrance Day, however, saw the official celebrations. 

Glen Waverley Campus Head, Barbara Lynch, and O.W.C.A. Executive Officer, Bruce Gregory, represented present and past students respectively. Lindsay Newnham, who took his Form 3A to the first of the regular camps in 1953 and who has written a history of the Camp, represented all teachers who have taken students to Chum Creek.  Resident Teachers Teresa Jarvis and Peter Bradley and Visiting Teacher Ben Bennett supervised their staff and students in preparing a superb party, the like of which previous campers would never have seen! 

Responding to Barbara Lynch's welcome and poems written and read by students, Dick Milne spoke with warmth and wit before cutting an enormous birthday cake. 

The years were bridged magically when Dick, now eighty-four, recalled stitching eight-year-old Robert Rush's eyebrow during the first camp.  Robert had told the same story five days before. 

Modern day 'Rush' students will sing the favourite school song 'Forty Years On' with greater empathy in the years to come.

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